"public speaking tips"When you hear the words ‘public speaking,’ what is your first reaction? Does your heart start to pound uncontrollably? Do your palms start to sweat? Do you instantly feel as if you are getting dizzy and that fight or flight response is stepping into play? If so, than you are not alone. Public speaking is the Number One fear of people, beating out even the fear of death!

If you have a fear of public speaking, however, don’t let that fear take control of you. Successfully speaking in public can be highly beneficial for you. It can help you increase your business exposure, it can assert your expert knowledge in a field and it can make you appear reputable and reliable. That being said, here are some tips that you can use to help you overcome your fears of public speaking:

Practice makes perfect. The old adage goes, ‘Practice makes perfect,’ and this saying is perfectly applicable to public speaking. The more practice you have with public speaking, the more confident you will become. In order to overcome your fear, start practicing. Practice saying your speech out loud in front of a mirror and once you are comfortable doing that, start practicing in front of a small audience (such as a friend, or someone you are very comfortable with.)

Breathe Easy. Breathing is a tactic that is used to reduce anxiety, and this tactic can certainly be used to help you overcome your anxiety and fears that are associated with speaking in public. Prior to making your speech, take deep breaths to calm your nerves and regain your balance. Doing so will help ground you and ease your fears.

Introduce yourself. Instead of walking out in front of the crowd and going directly into your speech, try introducing yourself first. Share your name, who you are and what it is that you do before giving your speech. Doing so will help to get you acquainted with your surroundings and will give you a little practice speaking in front of the audience before diving into your speech.

Engage your audience. Don’t be the only one who is doing the talking; engage your audience and get them involved with your speech. Ask questions of the audience to invite them to create a dialogue with you. When you get your audience involved in your speech, you will feel less like all eyes are on you, which will greatly help to ease your fears.

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