Public Speaking can leave the calmest and most collected person breaking out in a sweat. We can’t all deliver awe-inspiring speeches, a la Barack Obama, but there are small things that we can do to make sure that our own presentations go off without a blip.
Practice, Practice, Practice.
Of course, you’ll need to rehearse your presentation quite a few times. It may seem tricky to take several minutes out of your day, but try to think of a few minutes you’ll have alone to run over what you’ve written. Another common practice is to record yourself talking, it will give you a chance to hear how you’ll be heard by your audience, catch any typos or grammatical errors and will allow you to time yourself, as it’s easy to speed ahead when you’re feeling a tad nervous. Even get your family or roommates in on the action, they’re bound to give you helpful feedback that may help when it comes to the big day. While you don’t have to read directly from your notes, it’s always a good idea to have them on hand, instead of just winging it.
Get in the zone
Accept that nervousness is a totally normal, human emotion. Feeling nervousness engages our ‘fight or flight’ response and in turn produces adrenaline, which will help you think faster, speak more eloquently, and add passion and enthusiasm whilst you convey your message. Some use this extra boost to take a boxing class beforehand or sit down for some quiet meditative contemplation. No matter what you choose, make sure you’re in the right headspace before you’re at the front.
Going back to ensuring that you know your topic inside out, there’s no point in being pumped and ready to go and present, only to find out that your notes have been lost in the Cloud or that your laptop has failed you. Company experts like Prosource Technology Solutions, specialise in ways for you to backup and disaster-proof your data, especially in times of need. Find out more about their systems here: pstsonline.com.
Don’t try to be the best.
Think back to your favourite TED-Talk. Did they make a mistake or stumble over their words once or twice? You bet they did. We’re not robots (for now!) and fear of public speaking often stems from a deep fear of imperfection or rejection. It’s a guaranteed fact that no-one ever gets it perfect all the time, so how can you expect yourself to? Instead of striving toward the unachievable, take a breath, relax and be yourself. Trust that you know your subject and the audience is there to hear you speak knowledgeably about it.
Know your subject matter.
That being said, invest some time and make sure that you know your topic completely. Study books, lectures, anything you can get your hands on until the words become like second nature. Once you become completely confident on your chosen subject, there will be less room for nerves, after all, you may be the most authoritative in the room.