how to overcome public speaking anxiety

How To Overcome Public Speaking Anxiety?

Fear of public speaking, also known as glossophobia, is common among people. If you have glossophobia, you are not the only one; many people avoid speaking in public. And it is nothing to be ashamed of. However, not getting over it or not trying to overcome public speaking anxiety is something to be worried about.

Forget about the big mass; some people are even afraid of introducing themselves or giving a speech in front of a small group, like, in the classroom presentation. They feel pressure and shake in fear. If you have public speaking anxiety, you need to do something about it from your side. You should at least find ways to overcome it. So, how to overcome public speaking anxiety?

To help you, we have listed 12 practical ways to overcome it. 

How to overcome public speaking anxiety in 12 steps?

Be knowledgeable about your content.

Before public speaking, it is better to prepare yourself. Full knowledge about what you are going to say in front of people gives you confidence. So, first, gather information and ready your content.

The more you are knowledgeable about your content, the less you are likely to stumble and make mistakes. However, consider your audience before your content. Who is the audience, what they want, etc.- consider such questions before preparing. This way, you will be more focused, motivated, and comfortable when you know what you will say. 

Moreover, make your public speaking more fun and entertaining. For that purpose, you can use pleasing visuals and images to make your content more exciting and straightforward. Seeing your audience relaxed, you will feel at ease as well.

Practice, practice, and practice

Another effective way to overcome your public speaking anxiety is to practice, practice, and practice. Practice makes a man perfect. So, practice several times until you are comfortable delivering your speech. 

One of the effective ways to rehearse is by looking at a mirror. Seeing yourself in the mirror will help you realize that the audience are also people like you. It will boost your confidence. 

And another method is to present your speech to your friends and family. See how you perform in front of them and ask for their feedback. Find your weaknesses and work on them.

Or record yourself when you are alone. This way, you can improvise your speech. 

Don’t memorize your content.

Sometimes, people make mistakes memorizing their entire content. If you ask us, then we would recommend you not to do this. It is a bad idea to do this. What if you forget your content when you see the audience in front of you? What if you get stuck in the middle when delivering? Consider these things when you are memorizing. So, it is better to prepare well to rock the speech entirely. 

You will only be embarrassed if you forget your speech. As a result, your public speaking anxiety increases even more. So, know your material and prepare what to cover in your speech rather than memorizing. 

Overcome your fear step-by-step

Remember one thing that whatever you do, do it one step at a time. The same applies to overcoming your fear. Overcome your public speaking anxiety step-by-step. Never try to do something that will make your fear even worse.

Being nervous means, you are straining yourself. So, before your speech, calm your mind. Don’t overthink about your content and throw away unnecessary thoughts. Prepare well, practice, and deliver your content confidently.

Think of it as a normal conversation

There aren’t any rules nor right or wrong ways of public speaking. How you deliver, your tone, style, body language, and gestures are what matters a lot. Think of it as a normal conversation. Never think of it as something out of the ordinary. 

If you have ever gone to a public speaking event or watch videos, you might have seen experts delivering their content. You don’t see them starting the same way. Each of them has their own way of kicking off the event and conveying information to the audience. They deliver it like they are talking casually. So, you should do the same. For that, practice more, and everything will be fine. Otherwise, your fear will become your worst nightmare. 

Speak slowly

Some people become so nervous that they forget that they are giving their speech in front of the mass. They speak so fast that the audience is stunned, not because they are impressed. It’s because they can’t understand a single word. It is one of the common mistakes people make.

You are delivering your content so that the people can understand you, get the information clearly, and communicate with you.  So, speak slowly and steadily so that they can realize what you’re saying. Moreover, talking too fast will make you more nervous, forget your content, and stumble in the middle. 

Even if you are practicing yourself, try maintaining your pace and speak slowly. Keep your pace balanced; neither too fast nor too slow. 

Interact with the audience

Interacting with the audience is the most crucial thing to do in public speaking. Make your public speaking exciting and engaging. For that, you can begin your speech with a question. Or, you can use appealing visuals to make your speech interactive. 

You can also have your audience participate in your content, like asking them questions or solving puzzles. Once you start communicating with the audience, you will forget about your nervousness. You will realize that you are delivering your content fluently and more confidently. 

Moreover, you will have more time to plan on what to do next. So, make your audience think and make them immersed in your content.

Face the audience and make eye contact

You are communicating with real people, not walls. So, while delivering your content, we recommend you to face your audience and make eye contact. Make eye contact, smile, and focus on your content and body language.

Each person present is here to see you and get valuable content. When you look down and deliver, what will the audience think of you? You are only damaging your image and impression. But, it also doesn’t mean that you should focus only on one person. Make them feel that you are watching and talking to everyone. 

The more you avoid the audience, the more you will be nervous. Don’t give the wrong impression and give your audience a chance to criticize you. Moreover, when you see your audience listening to you actively, smiling, and sometimes clapping, your confidence will build up. So, always face your audience and make eye contact. 

Perfection isn’t the key point.

Remember one thing that perfection isn’t the critical point here. Don’t think of making your public speaking perfect. The more you think, the more you will be nervous and do stupid things. Don’t try to be perfect. Instead, deliver naturally and in a flow. 

Practice and try to find which style suits you best. Just stick to the basics, and everything will be fine. Don’t worry about what the audience will say. Prepare and deliver your content confidently. 

Watch motivational videos

We recommend you to watch motivational videos and other videos of how experts deliver their content. Don’t try to imitate them in the process. Observe their confidence. You won’t see them being nervous. Rather you will see how engaging their public speaking is and how they communicate with their audience. 

You will get an idea of how to deliver your speech.

Consult with experts

If possible, get help from experts. If your fear is something that you can’t handle yourself, consult experts. They will give valuable suggestions regarding your public speaking anxiety. Different techniques and therapy from them will help you get rid of your public speaking anxiety. 

Believe in yourself

And the last thing to do is believe in yourself. Until and unless you trust yourself, your abilities, and your skills, nothing you do will help you at all. Everything you do will fail if you don’t give your best. As a result, frustration starts to build and you start underestimating your abilities. Your inner voice will prevent you from starting anything. So, recognize your skills and improve them to avoid negative self-talk and be successful in your life.

Have faith in your abilities and neither underestimate or overestimate yourself. 

In Conclusion

Public speaking is a skill that everyone should have. And if you have public speaking anxiety, try the above methods and overcome it. 

Try to face your anxiety rather than avoiding it. Avoiding it will only make it worse, and make it harder and harder for you to come out of it. Brace yourself and give your best to overcome your phobia.

Hope this article “How to overcome public speaking anxiety” helped you. 

Image Credits: Marcos Luiz Photograph from Unsplash

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