Esther Littlefield is a real work at home mom who shares her tips for overcoming her fear of public speaking. For more visit www.wellnessmomlife.com
1. Just do it. Don’t let fear paralyze you and stop you from becoming a great public speaker. The best way to overcome your fear, in my opinion, is to just do it! The more you do it, the easier it becomes. Start with small groups or even practicing alone at home. Then move to medium sized groups, then larger groups. Perhaps join a networking group or Toastmasters to help work on your public speaking skills.
2. Record yourself, or have someone record you when you are speaking. You can again do this at home by yourself – most cell phones have a video camera option, or you can use a webcam on your computer. Practice your speech or your introduction in front of a camera, and then watch yourself. This is not exactly my idea of a great time, but the only way to get better is to listen to yourself and find what you are doing great, and what you need to work on. For example, when I record myself, I realize that I say “um” a lot. So, the next time I speak, I try to work on not saying “um” as often.
3. SMILE. This is one thing that so many people forget when they are public speaking – myself included! But a simple smile can help you to relax, as well as the audience. You don’t have to be funny, but if you smile, you will feel less nervous and look more comfortable. Again, I refer back to practicing at home. Practice in front of a mirror to check and see if you are smiling while you speak!
4. Don’t be afraid to make fun of yourself. Now that I think back to that incident with the piano, it’s pretty funny. At the moment, it wasn’t, but now, I can find humor in it. So if you’re in front of a group, and you flub up, don’t worry about it! Find a way to laugh it off, because most people have probably had that exact same experience at some point in time!
Work with Esther: www.littlefield.advancingwithus.com