Public speaking tips are one of the most sought after pieces of knowledge today. As the school and work environment continues to grow more and more competitive, simply having a great idea just doesn’t cut it anymore. More often than not, it is the ability to win over the crowd that spells the difference between success and failure. As such the need to communicate properly and effectively is more important than ever. However, many of us are unfortunately uncomfortable speaking their mind to a crowd- a sad condition that if left unchecked, can seriously hamper one’s growth professionally as well as personally.
Experts say that the fear of speaking in public is actually one form of social anxiety, and is actually quite normal. But while many admittedly suffer from it, there are varying degrees- the worst of which can even cause and individual to find it hard to function properly in society. People who suffer from this phenomenon often relate how they feel the entire room closing in on them as they try to speak in public, making it difficult for them to even utter a single word. Perspiration, shortness of breath, and even puking are also common symptoms before facing a large audience. Unfortunately, there is no definite and fool-proof way of curing this. There have been however, different public speaking tips employed that significantly helped a great many in curbing their fear. While different methods have varying degrees of success depending on the individual, diligent and regular practice has yielded excellent results.
Public Speaking Tips
Here we discuss some of the most common and effective public speaking tips employed today. They are easy enough to be learned by anyone, but are extremely effective if practiced properly.
Be extremely familiar with your topic- As if public speaking was not frightening enough, you really don’t need the fear of the unknown combining with it. Knowing your subject matter from the inside out will greatly boost your confidence and making the physical act of speaking about it slightly easier. Make sure to either pick out a topic you are interested in, or work double hard to be more familiar about it than anyone in your audience. The confidence you have from knowing your topic is definitely connected to the way you deliver your pubic address.
Pick the right words- While the first tip speaks about the content of what you plan to say, this second tip refers to the style of your delivery. When addressing a crowd, make sure to use words that you are comfortable with. Apart from the technical jargon that you might need to mention, make sure you use a light and easy tone so you don’t get rattled. If you speak as if you normally do, it lessens the alienation of the crowd and gives off the illusion that you are just speaking amongst friends. This will not only make you less nervous, but will also make you sound more sincere.
Know who you’re speaking to- The third in this list of public speaking tips looks not on the speaker, but on the audience. Most speaking engagements are made in front of a crowd where the common thread is quite evident- it can be a common school, business organization, religion, etc. Knowing the inclinations of the people you are speaking to is essential because you can determine what tickles their fancy. You can craft what you have to say so you can tap into what they are passionate about, what they find funny, and most importantly, what they dislike or find offensive. If the crowd you’re up against seems a little diverse, it would be wise to chat them up before you actually speak. Get to know key members of your audience so that while it may be impossible to reach all of them, you do get to connect with some.
Visualize- Perhaps it was Henry Ford who said it best, “Those who think they can and those who think they can’t are both right.” No matter how many public speaking tips you know, memorize, or do, it all still boils down to you believing in yourself. Picture yourself not only being able to deliver your speech in public, but picture yourself doing so in a grand fashion. Try to be as vivid as you can be and see all the faces of your audience completely mesmerized by what you are saying. Although it sounds abstract, effective visualization is extremely effective in boosting confidence and making sure that all your meticulous planning is properly executed.
Take your cue from others- many people will give you numerous and varied public speaking tips all designed to make you a better speaker. While all of these public speaking tips may be good and useful, chances are, you will feel some discomfort following them since you lack practice. To circumvent your inexperience, it sometimes helps to observe other people you consider great public speakers. Much like how an actor channels a role, looking at a more experience person giving a great speech can help keep your nervousness at bay. Before you completely immerse yourself and get into character however, remember that you are only observing other people to get confidence. Being yourself is still needed so that you come off natural and sincere.
The Last Public Speaking Tips
Control your breathing- The most obvious and simple of the many public speaking tips mentioned here today, controlling your breathing is actually one of the most difficult. When we get nervous or experience anxiety, one of the most evident and abrupt change is in how we breathe. The comfort of how we intake oxygen controls everything from our blood pressure to how much we sweat. The act of learning how to breathe is one of the public speaking tips that is effective not just when we are in front of the crowd, but in every tense situation we find ourselves in.
Drill- In the end, all the public speaking tips mentioned here will only be useful and effective through diligent practice.