Are you tired of being held back by your fear of speaking in public? If this suits you, you have probably already heard a lot of advice. You probably know all the common tricks to get over it. Some work better than others, but it seems like none of the strategies really take care of the problem, right? In this article, we explain three new strategies for overcoming your fear of speaking in public once and for all.
For these techniques to work, it is important that you know exactly what to say. You should almost be able to memorize it. You need to know your speech very well. If you are afraid to speak in front of an audience, then this is something you will have to do.
Confront your fears with the “worst nightmare” technique
The worst nightmare technique is a very useful strategy for overcoming a fear of speaking in public. It is a controlled “concern exercise” that is part of “ the Brief Strategic Therapy method” . It involves doing the following exercise every day. You have to start a week before you have to speak in front of your audience:
“ Every day at the same time, lock yourself in your room or in a place with gentle lighting where you will not be bothered. Lock the door so you can be sure you will not be interrupted. Set a 30-minute alarm on your mobile phone. Put yourself in a comfortable position and focus for 30 minutes on feeling your fear of speaking in public.
Instead of avoiding your fears, think about everything that worries you most about speaking in front of an audience. Let all fear flow freely. When 30 minutes have elapsed and the alarm rings, interrupt your thoughts and feelings by saying “STOP!” Stand up, leave the room, go to the toilet, wash your face and continue your day and your routine . ”
2. Share your fear of speaking in public, reveal your “weakness”
This strategy should be used as soon as you start your speech or presentation. If you are afraid to speak in front of an audience, then the most effective thing you can do will be to share and confess your fears. Explain to your audience that you are very excited, you are happy that they are there and that you can count on their presence.
Then do the following: Ask them to forgive you if you lose the common thread or if you get a little nervous. If that happens, it’s because you’re happy to give your presentation and to have them as an audience.
By talking about your fear or weakness, you free yourself from the pressure of trying to hide it. This strategy frees you from having to make sure that no one notices that you are scared and that your fears go unnoticed.
When you are open about a weakness, it becomes a strength. Beyond that, you create a connection with your audience and appeal to their empathy. Remember that a large percentage of the population suffers from social anxiety and / or a fear of speaking in public.
Your audience will show understanding for you, and then all the tension will just as quietly evaporate. All of this will help you overcome your fear of speaking in front of an audience.
Check your breathing and start by speaking very slowly
Controlling breathing is one of the most useful tools for overcoming the fear of speaking in front of an audience. One should concentrate on breathing deeply and breathing from the diaphragm (from your stomach instead of from the chest). When you focus all your senses on breathing, you stop being so aware of nervousness and fear.
When starting your speech, try to speak slowly. In this way, one improves the neurological feedback that speech produces. This effectively manages the fear. If you speak slowly, you block the symptoms of fear and create distance from them. This is because you focus your attention on something neutral, like rhythm in your voice.
These three strategies are some of the most useful strategies for overcoming the fear of speaking in public space. They work in cases of “fear”, but not “phobia” (excessively intense and crippling fear). If you have a phobia of speaking in front of an audience, these strategies will only help you confuse yourself. If you have a fear of speaking in front of an audience, practice these strategies and see yourself overcoming your fears. You can do it!