Feeling nervous before you have to deliver a public speech is absolutely normal. However, just before you start speaking, you need to attain a calm and relaxed state and sooth your nerves so that your speech generates the necessary impact on the audience. If you remain a nervous wreck, then the entire process can become a nightmare and will have you thinking thrice before venturing to make a public speech again. How to control your nerves when you have, say, only 5-10 minutes to spare before going to the podium? Here are 5 ways to do so:
1. Take deep breaths
Inhale through your nose and exhale through your mouth deeply. This will have a relaxing effect on you and make you less nervous.
2. Practice your delivery
A sure shot way to crush your fear is to practice your speech confidently in front of a few friends. You can take immediate feedback on your speaking style and body language to make last minute modifications.
3. Have some water
You wouldn’t want your throat to become dry immediately at the start, would you? Drink some water and take a water bottle along so that there is no discomfort or dehydration while you are speaking, because it can really be a huge distraction.
4. Act a little silly
This is a great coping mechanism for many people who feel terrified before going on the stage. Be a little shameless, make silly faces, and indulge in dumb behavior (not obnoxious though). This will help you become more comfortable with you.
5. Visualize a positive outcome
Mentally walk yourself through the speech or presentation and visualize yourself speaking confidently to a successful end. If you have a defeatist attitude from the start then the battle is half lost. You will then all the time be wary of judgmental looks and sniggers and contemptuous remarks. Remember, you own the stage. ENJOY THE MOMENT!
Found this article helpful? Now further work on your presentation skills by knowing these important body language tips!