Mastering nerves and fear—taming the butterfliesPresentation Transcript
Mastering Nerves and Fear—Taming the Butterflies Maybe you need to give a presentation, or lead a meeting, or train a class. Maybe just having to introduce yourself to others in a group setting makes you nervous…
Mastering Nerves and Fear—Taming the Butterflies When public speaking situations make us feel nervous and self-conscious, we can feel like there is something wrong with us, and that makes us feel even worse!
Mastering Nerves and Fear—Taming the Butterflies But according to the Book of Lists, public speaking is the most common fear people have! Amazing, that means you are not the only one!
The good news is, if you are willing to try, there are solutions.
But it doesn’t happen from just reading about it. Really try some of the suggestions, don’t just think about them.
But why do we get nervous?
Your body responds to anystressful situation. By thinking of this feeling as power, not nervousness, you will feel more in control.
Lack of experience increases nervousness. Volunteer speaking can help you build skills as well as confidence.
Being unprepared increases nervousness. Take time to think the presentation through and create a clear message, solid evidence, and appealing slides. Then spend the rest of your time rehearsing out loud. Train your mind, your voice and your body to deliver this presentation.
and remember: Most nervousness does not show. You may feel your knees shaking, your voice quivering, and a slow flush crawling up your neck, but your audience often doesn’t even notice. Use video feedback to determine what shows and what does not; you may be worrying over nothing.
What else can help?
Breathe. Breathe slowly, taking deep breaths, exhaling slowly and completely. Make sure your shoulders stay relaxed, and your breathing is silent. Do this every time you find yourself becoming nervous or anxious.
Relax your muscles. Use progressive relaxation, tensing and relaxing your muscles, one area at a time. Become aware of tension points (shoulders, jaw, fists, stomach in a knot) and relax them.
Walk it off. Take a brisk walk before your presentation, or walk up and down the halls of your building. Swing your arms, breathe deeply, and roll your shoulders. This may also reduce the urge to pace during your presentation.
Visualize success. Picture yourself relaxed and confident while making your presentation. The more you think positively the less mental space you have for worry and fear.
Rehearse.Practice out loud until you are comfortable with the material and you can speak with ease. Have a small group rehearse with you.
Use nurturing self-talk. Watch out for negative thoughts, like “I’ve never been good at public speaking.” Instead, use your internal voice for coaching; “I am getting better every day at presenting my ideas.”
Don’t focus on perfection. Focus on your audience and how this information impacts or helps them. You don’t have to be perfect to be successful.
More tips to build confidence
Arrive early. Off-site, arrive one hour ahead of time. On-site, aim for a minimum of 15 minutes. Set up your equipment. Do this first, so if something goes wrong you will have time to make changes or get help. Check the room. Are the tables and chairs arranged appropriately for your purposes? Do you have what you need in the room; flipcharts, markers, projector?
Check the lighting and temperature. Too hot or too cold? Do the lights need to be dimmed to see your slides? Can you adjust the shades? Eyeball your handouts. Do you have enough? Do you want them put out ahead of time, or will you pass them out as you need them? Do a mirror check. Hair, clothing, teeth—everything looks fine. Smile—you are ready to greet your audience members and deliver a presentation so good you deserve applause!
For information on workshops and individual coaching, contact: Gail Zack Anderson, president www.applauseinc.net email@example.com @applauseinc