Public speaking can be a terrifying thing. It’s hard to get up in front of a group of people and give a speech! It’s a nerve-wracking experience. And if you make a mistake, there are so many witnesses. So it’s no surprise that public speaking is something that many people try to avoid. More than one in four people are fearful of talking in front of groups of people.
Sometimes, however, there is no way around it. You just have to get up there and speak. But there are things that you can do to appear more confident and competent. Author Mandy Gilbert has three suggestions:
- Talk really slowly – When people are giving a speech and feeling nervous, they tend to speak quickly without even realizing it. This can cause audience members to feel disconnected, confused, or overwhelmed. To avoid this, make an effort to talk really slowly – much more slowly than you usually do. It might feel strange, but your audience will have a much easier time understanding and digesting the information. Also, don’t be afraid to take frequent pauses. You’ll sound well informed and in control – and it will give your audience time to react to what you’re saying.
- Get to the point – If the audience is there to get a particular piece of information, get right to it. Don’t ramble around and frustrate everyone. Also, make sure to deliver the information using language that is appropriate to your audience. Explain complex concepts and avoid the use of jargon at all costs.
- Act like someone else – Pretend that you’re in a movie, and you’re playing the part of a super-confident person (who is also a great public speaker). This might seem kind of odd, but it can actually help to calm your nerves and improve your performance.
Gilbert, M. (2018, May 29). 3 tips for public speaking with confidence, even if you don’t have any. Inc. Retrieved from: https://www.inc.com/mandy-gilbert/3-tips-for-public-speaking-with-confidence-even-if-you-dont-have-any.html?cid=hmside1