Some people like to be in the spotlight and feel like a fish in water on stage, while others are timid in front of an audience and prefer to speak in front of an audience online, such as teachers who give college homework help online rather than sitting in a classroom. Coach Andy Molinsky gives tips on how to overcome the fear of public speaking.
A meeting is an ideal situation in which you can show off your best side, build your reputation, and voice your opinion. But if you’re shy, unsure of yourself, or your upbringing doesn’t allow you to be active in front of your supervisor, meetings can be a nightmare.
My experience is that people deal with the fear of public speaking quite easily.
1. Set Specific Goals for yourself
When you know what needs to be done, it’s easier to get things done. Start small. For example, set a two-word goal to express an opinion at a meeting. Chances are, you will easily accomplish what you planned and be proud of yourself.
The next time the goal should be a little harder: for example, to make comments twice. Fear will gradually recede, and after a while, you will be free to speak from the podium and answer questions.
2. Prepare Thoroughly for Your Speeches.
The better you prepare, the easier it will be to perform. Ask the organizers for event materials or check the meeting agenda with your boss. If possible, participate in the preparation of the event. This will allow you to be aware of what’s going on and feel involved.
Sometimes speakers stumble at the beginning of a presentation, even if they know their presentation by heart. Make a speech plan and write your first sentences.
3. Make a List of What You are Good At
It’s easier to engage on issues you’re knowledgeable about than it is to just keep the conversation going.
4. Use Your Time Wisely Before the Event
Discuss agenda items in which you are knowledgeable with an event participant you know.
5. Avoid Words That Downplay the Importance of Your Knowledge
First, you are sharing with the other person an opinion that you may not dare to voice in front of a large audience. Second, the interlocutor gets to address you at the event itself because they know your point of view.
6. Try to be Confident, No Matter What.
Avoid words that downplay the importance of your knowledge. Don’t say, “I’m not very good at this. My question may seem silly…”. Make eye contact with your audience or interlocutor.
7. Don’t Forget to Raise Your Hand.
In the heat of the discussion, your voice may not be heard. And a raised hand is a way of saying, “I want to speak next” or “I have something to add.”
8. Don’t Think About the Impression You’re Making
Try to focus on what’s important and don’t worry about what others think of you. Fear of public speaking is one of the most common. If you can live normally with a fear of the dark or arachnophobia by eliminating the source of the fear, the fear of an audience interferes with learning and work. Therefore, this fear must be fought.