Does the thought of speaking in front of a group make you break out in a cold sweat? You’re not alone! Public speaking is one of the most common fears. At Corporate Speech Solutions, we help our clients gain the communication skills to master presentations and public speaking with professionalism and confidence. But even with strong communication skills, public speaking can be daunting. Here are some tips to help you relax and conquer your next presentation:
Keep Water Near You: Having a glass of water by your side can help in two ways. First, hydration is key to a strong, dynamic speaking voice. Second, taking a sip of water gives you an excuse to take a moment to gather your thoughts if necessary. If you find that during your presentation you fumble or simply feel overwhelmed, pause, take a sip of water, and then refocus.
Breathe: Often when people get nervous, they breathe shallowly. Taking a deep breath is an easy way to relax and calm down. Before you begin your presentation, close your eyes and take a deep breath or two, focusing on the movement of the air. As you speak, continue to take deep breaths throughout your presentation. In addition to helping you relax, the pause will give the audience an opportunity to absorb your message.
Warm-Up: Before a presentation, find a quiet place and do some vocal warm-up exercises. Lip flutters and humming are great ways to not only improve your vocal quality, the act of warming up gives you an opportunity to relax and release nervous energy before you begin.
Practice, Practice, Practice: Knowing your presentation inside-out is the best way to ward off anxiety. If you don’t have to think about the content of your presentation, you can relax and focus on your speaking.
Want to learn more? Take look at this video by Corporate Speech Solutions President, Jayne Latz:
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