Speaking in front a lot of people is one of the greatest fears of many. Personally, I had to a struggle a lot before I became more comfortable in speaking in front of the audience. I had to practice day and night just to ensure that I would not make any mistake. However, public speaking is not about not committing any mistakes but more engaging to your audience and getting your message across.
Here are some things that you need to know in order to overcome your fears in speaking publicly:
It is important for you to organize not only your materials but most especially your thoughts. Knowing the topic at hand is very important so that if questions arise, you will be able to answer them. If you know your topic very well, you will be more confident and relaxed in delivering your speech.
During your practice, it is good to have index cards where you can take a peek into whenever you forget something. In writing your key points, use bullets so you it is easy for you to understand.
Practice makes perfect. It pays to practice always to ensure that you know your speech very well. Proper pronunciation of words, organized ideas and compelling delivery are the things that make a good public speaker. Of course, knowing your topic is just as important to ensure that your audience can get answer from you if they ask.
I also practice in front of the mirror or video myself speaking and review it after. I do this so that I can see my facial expressions and the way I look whenever I speak. This way, I can avoid doing mannerisms that are not good to look at.
Do not be negative
Before, I used to think that I will fail in delivering my speech or I may not able to answer any questions. These fears have taken its toll on me because I end up making a lot of mistakes even if I am well-prepared. I always think about the what ifs like, “what if I forget?” “ what if I cannot answer the question thrown at me?” My advice, never think about these things because they will only mess up your mind. Instead, think positive by being open to these possibilities but do not dwell on them.
Be straight to the point
For you not to commit many mistakes, go straight to your point and avoid adding information that will cause you to forget your main ideas. What I do is I create a pattern where I always keep my main key points to ensure that I won’t go astray.
Sooner or later, what bothers you most when you speak publicly will be all gone or at least, you will now have the confidence to do it.