Not a day goes by without somebody stepping up to say something, be it on stage or for announcements, or even for normal conversations. Same goes for the people out there who fear what could possibly go wrong when they do.
"What if they go silent on me?" "What if they don't like what I say?" "What if I mess up?"
"Oh no, they'll think I'm awkward." "I might forget what to say!"
Truth be told, there is a secret to handling these issues: Confidence.
Confidence helps you choose the right tone you need to say what you want to say. Confidence is a tact; it gives you the wits to think "Is it really okay to say this?". Confidence is being able to move and keep the mood going, regardless of others' opinions. There is so much more to the word than what was said half a sentence ago, but for the most part, we'll focus on the kind of confidence you need for public speaking.
Knowing that helps, sure, but the blaring question behind it all is "How?". Having confidence in yourself is certainly not as easy as lifting a finger, but there are ways to let it grow more each day.
1. Consciously do one thing different every day.
You could brush your teeth from right to left, instead of left to right. You could switch two small night or morning routines. You could wear a color you haven't worn in a while, or even sit on the other side of the train. Whatever menial everyday task you choose to change, doing this once a day teaches awareness. Awareness is a big part of being confident. You see much more when you're aware, like how people respond to certain topics, or how strongly an inside joke can make a group laugh. This helps you adapt to the crowd and read the room.
Listening comes with awareness, but most times, people aren't aware of what they do themselves. Take the habit of being aware and listen to yourself speak. Be aware of your tendencies and habits, and change what you feel you need to change. Although doing this is sure to help, it helps much more to be able to listen to and take in criticism.
The precursor to a good speaker is a relaxed heart and mind. Breathe deeply, organise your thoughts, simplify what you say, and think of getting the job done. You'll have your audience's attention before you know it!
4. Practice, Practice, Practice!
Take any interaction you have throughout the day and use it as practice! Joking around with classmates, talking to coworkers, or even talking to your pet or plant. Take every opportunity to practice.
5. Expect to be nervous.
This is the most important step. It's always understandable to be nervous. Fear or anxiousness before a speech is no rare gem. Understand that it is part of being a person, and do your best to work against it.
Once you've finished, congrats! You've shown yourself what you're truly capable of, and the once-massive public speaking issues have died down to a speck. Still, always remember these steps, if the need to kill some anxiety arises.
Find out more on how to beat public speaking anxiety with Global Elite Lingua Franca's communication programs. Message us today to learn more about our services. Let us know how we can help you become your best self.
(Photo by Luis Quintero, Pexels)