You have probably been there before…your stomach is in knots, your palms get sweaty, and you feel completely overwhelmed with nerves. These might be some of the feelings you experience when you are asked to present in public. Studies suggest that one of the most common fears shared among people is the fear of public speaking. While this might be a very common fear, the truth is it can be detrimental for your professional career. In the business world, it is likely that you will be asked to present at some point so it is essential that you learn how to overcome your presentation anxiety in order to give a formal presentation. The following tips can help you overcome your fears in order to give a successful presentation with ease.
Prepare and Practice
Before giving any presentation, you should take time to organize your thoughts and materials. Write down a script of your ideas and key points. Make sure you are covering all pertinent information and consider any questions that might be asked. Once you have prepared your presentation, you should practice thoroughly. Practice your presentation in front of the mirror and even in front of another person. The more prepared and familiar you are with the material, the less anxious you will be when it comes time to present.
Focus, Visualize, and Relax
Your presentation is prepared and you are ready to go. Before the big day, take some time to visualize what fears you might experience and what might cause you to be anxious. Imagine standing in front of the crowd and think about how you can calm your nerves. When you feel your heart starting to race and your voice beginning to shake try taking some deep breaths and focus on calming your body. Remember that you do not have to be perfect, it is ok to slow down and gather your thoughts, and remind yourself not to focus on what other people think. Rather, your focus should be on delivering the information. Exercise, yoga, and meditation can also help relieve anxiety.
Take a Public Speaking Course
You cannot put a price tag on the ability to speak and present well. You can make great advancements in your career when you are able to successfully deliver a presentation. Commit to taking a course on public speaking and make a decision to learn how to speak well in front of others. This is a decision that can have a significant on your personal and professional life.
The reality is that anyone can overcome the fear of public speaking. These tips can be very helpful in learning how to cope with presentation anxiety. While it is no easy task, it is possible to become a great presenter and it can harbor great benefits.