5 Public Speaking Tips To Help You Overcome Your Fears

There’s a huge mountain of information available on the internet about how you can overcome a fear of public speaking and if you do a search for Google on some of the most popular public speaking related topics you are likely to discover millions of results.

While this may seem like a massive amount of information to help you to overcome your fears it’s probably fair to say that if you are one of those people who suffers from a fear of public speaking you probably don’t believe there is nearly enough information out there to help you.

The reality is however that in many cases this fear of public speaking is actually self-inflicted, after all when you consider that the audience is actually there to hear what it is you have to say it’s not them that are causing you to be afraid to go out there and speak, it’s actually you.

You are the one that gets uptight and worried about standing up in front of the audience to share what you have to say, it’s you that puts the pressure on yourself and worries what people will think (the reality is they are probably thinking “thank god it’s not me up there!”) and it’s you that isn’t able to take a deep breath and calm down before standing up to speak.

So with that in mind this article is going to provide you with 5 simple tips that you can use to overcome your fear of public speaking and get you to the point where you are more than comfortable talking to a group of people and getting your point across.

1. Make sure you know your topic inside and out

The single most important thing you can do as a public speaker is to ensure that no matter what possible question someone could ask you about the topic you are speaking about, you will have the answer. The fear of being caught out or being stumped by a question can be so overwhelming at times that it can lead even the most confident of people doubting their knowledge in a particular subject, so making sure you are an expert in what you are about to say will lift a huge weight off your shoulders.

2. Don’t both trying to imagine your audience naked

While many people say that this is one way to overcome a fear of public speaking the truth is that it just isn’t going to work, after all if you are spending your time trying to imagine what all of those people look like naked how can you concentrate on what it is you are trying to say, more than likely trying this is just going to distract from your primary task at hand?

And let’s face it, when you look out at the room full of people how many of them do you really want to see naked, there’s bound to be more than a few people in the room that you wouldn’t want to see naked regardless of the situation you are in so why would it help you to make your presentation or speech?

3. Meet and greet your audience in advance of your speech

Take the time prior to getting up in front of your audience to try and meet as many of them as you can, much of the fear associated with public speaking is to do with unfamiliarity so if you feel like you know many of the people that you are about to talk to it will make it much easier as you will feel more like you are talking to a group of friends that to complete strangers.

What this approach also allows you to do is take your mind off making the speech, if you are spending your time in polite conversation with people in the build up to your speech it is much less likely that you will be able to wind yourself up with worry and by the time it’s your turn to talk to the audience you will have had little time to become tense and dry mouthed.

4. Inject some life into your speech

Don’t just get up in front of everyone and stand still like a tree and simply read from your cue cards or presentation, the secret to being a good public speaker is to come across with enthusiasm and energy. Use your body to get your point across, wave your arms if you have to, just make sure that you put some actions into your speech to stop you from getting rooted to one spot, you should even feel free to move around a little as you speak to keep the audience focused on what you are doing.

5. Don’t be afraid to stop and repeat yourself

Sometimes when people are in the middle of a speech they can find themselves umming and ahhing a lot as a way to fill in space or silence as few people feel comfortable standing up in front of a group of people and saying nothing. However a well-timed pause and a little bit of repetition can be a powerful way to make your point sink in, so don’t be concerned if you find yourself having to repeat a sentence that was full of ums and ahhs, just remember to replace these with silence when you repeat yourself as a way of making your point.

So there you have them, 5 useful tips to help you overcome your fear of public speaking, make sure you try them next time you have to make a presentation or speak to a group of people as they will make a positive different to your public speaking experience.

If you can overcome your fear and become a confident public speaker you will find that life becomes that much easier, you’ll no longer feel sweaty and uncomfortable before presenting to a room full of your co-workers, even on a 1-to-1 level you will feel more at home with your ability, no doubt you’ll soon find that public speaking is just like any other thing you have to do and your fear will be gone.