Tuesday 9th June 2015
7 Ways to Overcome the Fear of Public Speaking
If you always find yourself fearful when asked to speak in public, fear not for you are not alone. There is a large community of people who would rather jump down a storey building than stand before an audience to speak. The good news is that you can always overcome this unnecessary fear. Here are a few ways to address public speaking apprehension.
1. Become used to a wide range of speaking situations
Expose yourself to different public speaking situation. Always take advantage of any opportunity you have to speak in public. The more you speak the less fear you experience.
2. Prepare Well
One reason why people become fearful when they find themselves before an audience to speak is lack of preparation. The more knowledge you have of your topic or material the more confident you would be before your audience.
3. Relax, take advantage of deep breathing
When we are struck by fear to speak, what happens is that there is constriction on our stomach muscles, and as a result we breathe from our chest region instead of from the diaphragm. When this happens we take in little amount of oxygen and consequently give our little amount of carbon dioxide. Our brain is therefore starved of sufficient oxygen which gives rise to its low performance. For this reason, one of the best recommendations to overcome this fear is to breathe deep. Breathe from the diaphragm so that your brain can function at top performance when it has sufficient amount of oxygen.
4. Change how you think about public speaking
Public speaking skills is not the exclusive preserve of some unique few. It is available to anyone who is willing and diligent enough to understand and practice the rudiment of the art. When you start thinking in this manner, it becomes easier to understand and overcome the fear of public speaking.
5. Visualize yourself doing well
Positive visualization puts us in a better position for an outstanding performance. When you imagine yourself doing well, speaking without fear, there is a great chance that you will perform likewise.
6. Speak naturally
When you speak with your natural voice and style, you think less of how your voice sound or maintaining an accent and think more of what you have to say or the content of your presentation,. Maintaining your natural flow reduces anxiety and makes you speak better with much reduced apprehension.
7. Skills training
Attending trainings on public speaking is a good way to develop a better understanding of the art of public speaking and also to overcome the anxiety that it brings.