Public speaking is a way of expressing your thoughts or ideas to a group of audience. It is an essential skill that every individual should develop. Commonly, public speaking is considered as a formal speech given by an individual to a group of people. It was traditionally a part of persuading people with their ideas. At present, technology plays a key role in molding the art of public speaking through presentations, video conferencing, and other forms.
Glossophobia is the common term referred to the fear of public speaking; in other words, stage fear. In fact, many people become nervous simply by the thought of speaking in public. Part of their fear rolls in when they start thinking of the things that might go wrong. Different people have different anxieties; few sweats uncontrollably while standing on the stage; some people doubt their self-esteem and self-confidence. With the aim of conquering the fears, one must master public speaking skills progressively.
Steps to improve public speaking skills
To defeat your anxieties and to sharpen your public speaking skills, few simple tips are listed down that will aid you.
- Know your topic
The foremost point is to know your topic thoroughly. Research more information that are related to your topic and collect some relevant statistical data. While presenting, if you waver your speech out of context, this research will help you in recollecting the information.
- Possess a unique style of speech
Own a unique style such that the audience easily gets attracted and pays attention to you. Start your speech with a fact or short story related to the topic. Most importantly, don’t let your audience know about your fears or nervousness. Just relax and breathe right before starting the speech.
- Practice in front of the mirror
After preparing the speech, practice it in front of the mirror until you get the flow. It not only helps you in practicing your speech but also to check on your facial expressions and body language. A very famous proverb quotes that “Practice makes a man perfect” proves to be right in this context. Be charming and easily approachable. Ask your friends or family to listen to your speech and give some suggestions. If not, record your speech and check for the mistakes.
- Analyze your audience
Knowing about your audience priorly helps you in preparing the speech as per their expectations and interests. If the speech is a little boring or the topic is being deviated, their reaction will help you figure out the problem.
- Right volume and keep contact
One must learn to deliver the speech with proper pausing, stressing of words and pitching. The right volume of speech and pauses at the right time makes it much clearer and easily understandable. The speaker must always have eye contact with the audience to grab their attention.
- Highlight with humor
Every speech can be fascinating when added with some humor. If you are a humorous person, then it shouldn’t bother you much. If you are not good at jokes, never strain yourself. Be authentic and deliver your speech efficiently as planned.
- Prepare a plan B
Always have a plan B. You can never predict the misfortune. Sometimes, the projector, speakers, or any other supporting material of your speech may not work. At that time, plan B will always help.
- Be time-bound
Do not exceed the time limit given to you. Also, allocate time for interaction with the audience. This will help you connect with them. At the same time, do not finish your speech much before the time limit. People will think that you haven’t prepared for it.
- Feedback session
In the end, always interact with your listeners and crave for their feedback. Their valuable feedback will be of great use in future preparations.
Adopt these simple tips and enhance your public speaking skills. Only regular practice will help you overcome your anxieties.
Keep reminding yourself that your speech must inspire the listeners and work hard for it. As far as public speaking is concerned, the harder you try, the better the outcomes will be. Never hesitate to speak,