Though there are certainly some people with a natural knack for public speaking, many more seem to live in fear of being called upon to get up in front of others in this way. However, by reviewing some key concepts, it is quite possible to make public speaking something to love, not dread. The article below should help. Practice your speech more than once after you memorize it. This will allow you time to tweak the speech if needed. Learn to breath with ease and pace your delivery. Give yourself some pause time after making key points. If you can, use the same equipment for practice that you will use when giving your actual speech.
Tips to consider:
- Try to relax before and during your speech. Breathe deeply and remember that you are well-prepared, so you have nothing to worry about. Some say that it helps to envision your audience members in their underwear to help you relax. This sort of visualization can help you look and feel more relaxed while speaking.
- Where will you be speaking? Know the room well. Learn how far your voice carries if there is not a microphone. Use the equipment to see how it works. Try learning to use visual aids, if they’re available. Make sure you understand what an appropriate level of eye contact is.
- Avoid fidgeting when speaking in front of an audience. Playing with your hair, chewing on your nails and other similar behaviors serve to distract the audience from listening to what you have to say. Instead of remembering your message, they may remember that you continually smoothed your hair. If you find it difficult to stop fidgeting, clasp your hands together in front of you or behind you, or place them on the lectern.
- Do not try to be someone else when giving your speech. If you want to grab your audience’s attention, you cannot come across as fake; your audience will not take you seriously. So, in other words, avoid saying things you would not normally say and don’t do anything you normally would not do.
- Do not drink alcohol before you give a speech. Although you may think that a bit of alcohol will boost your confidence, the results could be disastrous. Alcohol can cause memory issues and may make you stumble over your words.
How to Do:
- Prior to getting up and speaking, try and connect with the audience. Smile when entering the room, and you can try shaking hands if you’re able. Doing this will help you feel confident.
- Eye contact is critical during public speaking engagements. Although you may not be able to make eye contact with every member of a large audience, your efforts will not go unnoticed. Before your speech, identify key members of the audience and their assigned seating, if possible. This enables you to make the greatest impact on the most important audience members.
- Before you get ready for your speech, make sure you know the material. This is easy when you are actually interested in the topic you have chosen. Try learning more about the topic than what you actually say in your speech. This will help you add some useful additional information. it can also help you better answer questions.
- Consider your appearance. The audience is not likely to listen to you when your state of dress or grooming skills are distracting. Consider your audience when you think about what you are going to wear. Suits work well in for most speeches, but consider something more casual when speaking to younger audiences.
- Always leave your audience wanting more. Nothing is worse than a speaker who drones on and on for what seems like hours. Instead, get your information delivered in a timely fashion. Keep the speech within the requested time parameters. However, do not keep your speech so short that you do not give your audience the information that they desire.
While you hope that nothing will happen to ruin your speech, try to plan for any contingencies. What will you do if one of your audiovisual aids does not work? What if the microphone fails? How will you handle audience interruptions or questions? Having a plan in place to handle possible issues makes it more likely that your public speaking experience will go well. Lots of folks hate the idea of having to speak to a group. But, armed with the information presented in the piece above, nobody should worry too much the next time the need does arise. Refer to these materials often, and speaking to groups will become easier than it ever seemed possible.