Public Speaking: How To Overcome Your Fears

Classroom - Public Speaking

Why Is Public Speaking One Of The Greatest Fears

You step to the front of the room, as the looming sound of many discussions quiets to a piercing silence.  You look down at your notes for a second, and when you look up, everyone has their eyes on you. Beginning to speak, you can’t quite tell if your voice is loud enough, or if your words are coming out intelligibly or not. You panic, and start to sweat. losing your place, you frantically look to your slides to get some sense of where you are in your presentation.

If you had to do some form of public speaking, and what I described sounds a little like your experience, you are not alone. The majority of the world feels terror at the thought of speaking in front of a group of people. If it’s as serious as a phobia, it would be described as Glossophobia.

Innately, humans put a lot of value in how we are perceived by others. There is also the intimidating aspects of being overwhelmed, not knowing the answers to questions, being judged harshly, or forgetting your lines; which result in the dreaded emotions of embarrassment and shame. Public speaking doesn’t have to be like this. There is hope, and you might be surprised at how easy it can be to turn your perspective around, and speak with ease.

When I was in the Marine Corps, my specific job entailed giving weekly presentations, for the duration of the four years I served. I had to give presentations in front of many troops, and/or high ranking officers, who were all hanging on my every word. At first it was the most intense and stressful period of my life, but I learned how to alleviate my dread and anxiety, and give a presentation with ease.

After the military, I took public speaking classes in college, and discovered a few key differences in presentation style, which I’ll get into later. Rest assured, I will tell you everything I know that works. Now lets talk about how you can help yourself be more comfortable with the dreaded activity of public speaking.

Ways to Ease Your Anxieties, And Speak With Confidence

1.  Practice, Practice, and Practice some more.

This is probably the most important piece of advice I can give, and I put it at the top of the list so you can internalize it first. When you have a commanding knowledge of what you are going to talk about, everything you say will ring with an aire of confidence.

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