Overcoming Public Speaking Nerves
I must confess - no matter how many times I am invited to deliver a speech or moderate a panel, I do get a little nervous right before I get on stage or get handed the microphone. Other experienced speakers shared the same "confession" with me. These are some tips I share with my corporate clients and very often I have to remind myself of: (As simple as these tips are, the repeated reminders are what make them helpful and crucial)
1) Take SEVERAL deep breaths
2) Remind yourself the PURPOSE of your speech
3) Visualize the positive impact your speech will have - that is - think MORE about how you can help others and LESS about yourself
4) This one is highly effective for me, and I truly recommend it too: At some point I take a stand from the far end/corner of the room and visually "absorb" my audience. I watch them smile, talk and interact with one another; and sometimes we would exchange non verbal greetings when our glances coincide. For me, this allows me to build a "calm buffer" so my mind doesn't get too active right before my speaking engagement, yet it helps to establish a warm enough "connection" I have with my audience, a certain familiarity I count on to deliver my speech with ease and comfort.
Try it, it works wonders!
Of course we all have different habits, principles and thought processes that lead us to success, but due to my passion in the art and science of IMAGE building - I have done extensive research and studies on how to solidify certain common steps we can take to attain tangible positive results in areas like social communication and public speaking. Calming our nerves before any public speaking engagement is glossing the surface, the vital component is to master the tools in MANAGING the nervousness we all feel. You are not alone!