Becoming a better public speaker should be on everyone’s bucket list. It’s an important life skill that can make or break opportunities. Mastering the skill is guaranteed to take you further in life. It’s such an obvious goal, but it is also one of the more terrifying.
Speaking in public is a daunting and intimidating task for many. Stepping onto a stage with the intent of speaking only to find your throat dry and your palms sweating, hundreds of eyeballs staring directly at you… Just the thought of it is enough to cause anxiety for those who haven’t mastered it.
But we’re here to help. Read up on these tips and you’ll be on your way in no time.
1. Keep it Simple
One very easy way to overwhelm yourself is to try and cram too much information into your presentation. Rushed presentations are a major turnoff to audiences and can feel incredibly amateurish. Put some thought into your message and boil it down as much as you can. Keep it simple and you’ll find yourself already a better public speaker!
2. Prepare by Listening
Listen to great speeches and presentations and really think about why you enjoyed them. Forget the message itself and break down the presentation. Study the transcript. Listen for the pace, the ebb and flow of information and most importantly, the quiet moments.
3. Film Yourself
Start with an audience of one: yourself. Before you step onto that stage, set your phone up to record your presentation. Once you are done cringing, you’ll notice places where you can improve. Check your posture, your tone of voice, your eye contact. Do you appear confident and knowledgeable? Discover those weak points and try again.
A genuine smile can go a long way to put people at ease. It also expresses confidence, which is crucial, and shows that you are having a good time. If you are speaking on stage, then you should be knowledgeable and skilled on the subject of the presentation… Smiling can help reinforce your expertise.
5. Consider it a Performance Art
Public speaking is a performance art. The greatest speeches you’ve seen were likely not improvised on stage. The person delivering the speech practiced, tweaked and work on their presentation until they were happy. If you consider your presentation to be similar to an actor’s monologue, then you’re already one step ahead.