You may have experienced stomach cramps, sweating in the palms of your hands, and emptying your mind of words while speaking. What will you look like when you are introduced and the room is quiet? Are you doomed to a nervous breakdown or even paralysis during the presentation, or can you overcome your anxiety and surprise the audience with a great speech? (Or at least satisfy them?)
Anxiety control or anxiety relief?
If you are like most people, giving a speech or presenting is probably one of your biggest fears. However, such situations often occur in the lives of all of us. Your audience may not be hundreds, but presenting to staff or even team members is a common occurrence. You need to develop strategies and techniques for yourself to overcome your anxiety and focus all your attention on strong and effective presentation.
You may have noticed that we did not say a word about getting rid of anxiety. Because presenting is not a natural thing to do, and even the most experienced presenters become somewhat anxious. The point is, you can use the energy of your anxiety in a positive way. When adrenaline is released in your body, its energy can be used to communicate passionately, convincingly and passionately. And the key is to reduce your anxiety, so you can use your energy to do positive activities instead of controlling your anxiety. (The article How to Turn Stress into Positive Energy can help you in this way.)
Therefore, it is better to remember six key points to control and control anxiety. All of these tips are designed to help you focus on your audience and their needs instead of your own and your feelings. All of these points stem from a fact:
The more insecure you are, the more anxious you will be.
So the more you can control your uncertainty, the less you experience anxiety and the more energy you have left over.
6 steps to reduce and manage speech anxiety
Step # 1- Discovering Your Purpose
Consult with your audience before presenting. The more confident you are that the presentation will be effective and engaging to your audience, the less anxious you will feel. Of course, you do not want your presentation to be a big surprise. Because in this case, you will completely lose control of the audience’s reaction and presentation, which is an important factor in causing anxiety. Therefore:
- Identify who your audience is.
- Ask the people who represent your audience what they expect from the presentation.
- Run your presentation once with a small number of people and see that they think nothing is too little or too much.
- Try to reach out to participants before the presentation and ask them a few questions about their expectations.
- Welcome and communicate with the audience as they enter the auditorium and try to understand their expectations of the presentation.
Step 2: Know your content
There is nothing more disturbing than presenting a subject about which you are not fully prepared. Of course, we do not mean to be prepared for a speech like an expert in advance, but it is better to have enough information before presenting and make sure that you know the audience and their needs well, because this way you can provide effective information to your audience. Give.
Another important point to keep in mind is that you may not be able to incorporate everything you know into the presentation, as it can make the presentation long and tedious. So choose the most important points and state them based on how long you have.
To make your content compelling and memorable, ask relevant questions of the audience and encourage them to participate. This will improve the learning experience and give you short breaks. It also allows you to convey your information in the form of a conversation, which increases the credibility of your claim.
Step # 3- Discovering Your Purpose
A common technique for controlling anxiety is to memorize what you are about to say. But this makes your presentation look like a robot saying information. If you skip or forget a word, the whole presentation will fall apart and your anxiety will increase every moment. So it is better to give your presentation a structure that will give you clues as to what you need to say in the next step.
- Keep a note of a set of key phrases.
- Refer to these phrases at the appropriate time.
- If you use slides and PowerPoint, use these expressions in it.
This approach helps you to control your uncertainty about keeping what you want to say, and to articulate things in an orderly manner.
A simple, widely used, and very effective structure is one that tells the audience what they are going to be told. Article How to structure your presentation Explains this in detail.
Step 4: Practice, practice, practice
Although you should avoid memorizing the entire presentation, you should be able to deliver it easily. A thorough knowledge of the subject builds confidence and practice helps you to express words naturally. This means that words come out of your heart and mind instead of the paper you hold in your hand.
- Learn the order of your presentation.
- If you feel you have to memorize something, limit it to the beginning. This will help you to have a slow start.
- Shoot yourself. Then you will see how you look in the eyes of others and you can change the points you need.
- Record your voice to understand how you speak and the tone and speed of your speech and improve it if necessary.
- For large, large audiences, rehearse your presentation in front of a small audience. For example, invite your co-workers to listen to your talk at lunch.
Step Five: Ready, Ready, Ready
Once you have figured out what you want to say, you need to prepare yourself for the actual presentation.
- Decide what you want to wear, always choose comfortable and appropriate clothes.
- Arrive early and get your supplies ready.
- Anticipate problems (such as a device not working or forgetting something) and have a solution for each.
- If possible, present, test, and set up everything in a real-world environment.
- Prepare your answers to any questions you may have. Try to put yourself in someone who sits in front of a crowd and always asks questions of the presenter.
Step # 6- Discovering Your Purpose
Anxiety triggers psychological reactions, most of which lead to an increase in adrenaline in your body system. You can control these effects with a few simple techniques:
1. Practice deep breathing
Adrenaline makes you breathe shallowly. With deep breathing, your brain gets the oxygen it needs, and your body gets the feeling that you are calmer. It also helps to eliminate the vibration of sound that is usually caused by irregular breathing.
2. Drink water
Adrenaline causes dry mouth and harder tongue movement. Have a glass of water with you. Take a sip of water from time to time, especially when you want to emphasize a point.
Smiling is a natural sedative that transfers positive energy into your body.
4. Use visualization techniques
Imagine delivering your presentation to an enthusiastic, enthusiastic, smiling and positive audience. Keep this positive image in mind and remember it immediately before you start.
5. Press and massage your forehead
Energize the front of the brain, which is primarily responsible for speech in the body.
6. Immediately before you start talking, pause, make eye contact, and smile
Pausing, eye contact and smiling are very relaxing and give you time to get everyone’s attention.
7. Speak more quietly than when talking in a conversation
And put longer pauses between sentences. This low speed calms you down and helps the audience sitting at the back of the conference room hear your voice more easily.
8. Be active while presenting
This consumes some of the energy from the anxiety.
9. Do not think of yourself
Keep in mind that your audience is in the meeting to get information, and your job is to convey that information.