Stage fright is common and affects most everyone at some time or other. Whether it’s talking to a client, speaking at a fundraiser, or performing, find a way to overcome the fear and let your inner star shine brightly.
Increase Your Comfort Level: Self Improvement: Stage fright isn’t just for entertainers that make their living playing to crowds. It can be experienced by those who simply must speak to an important client on the phone, through Skype, or in person. If this is something that tends to grip you, don’t despair. It’s so common that it has been called the number one fear of people from all backgrounds, professions, and ages. There are ways to help you cope with stage fright and increase your comfort level.
If you know you will be speaking in front of a crowd or meeting, leave early enough to travel comfortably to your destination. Don’t procrastinate until the last minute and then find yourself rushing to make it on time. Plan to arrive early so you can walk through the room and become familiar with it. Talk to anyone who happens to be there including staff that’s setting up tables, the elevator operator, or early arrivals. Have a seat and relax with a glass of water. Make it a place of comfort on a friendly level.
Take care of yourself physically, too. Arrive well hydrated and continue to sip water throughout your engagement. If your stomach tends to be jumpy, be sure to eat something before you go, but go easy. A double jumbo chorizo burrito with hot sauce isn’t a good idea. Make a conscious effort to breathe slowly and steadily. Visual imaging of yourself wowing the crowd ahead of your speech will definitely help. Don’t forget to smile.
- Be prepared beyond what you believe you should be. Here a are a few tips you may find helpful:
- If you need to memorize your speech, do so until you can say it in your sleep without thinking about it.
- Know your material well enough to answer questions if the format dictates a Q & A session.
- Use a podium or table in front of you to create a small natural barrier between you and the audience.
- If the situation allows, create a PowerPoint presentation with bullet points and images to help keep you on track.
- Note cards can be used to jog your memory, will help you to stay on track, and will help with brain blanks that can happen when you least expect it.
Entertainers, politicians, business people, and speakers that have spent their entire working lives playing to huge crowds and packed houses still report feeling ill, shaking, sweating, and even more physical symptoms despite decades of performing or speaking several times per week. Professionals have personal tricks that they use to ease the jitters. Try a variety of things until you find what works best for you.
The most important thing to remember is that everyone experiences stage fright, so don’t let it keep you from your goals. Find a way to overcome it and carry on.
About the Author: ‘H’ John Mejia is a Business Consultant who specializes in proven- cutting edge Media, Marketing, and Sales strategies. He is an award winning TV Host /Producer and uses his sales and marketing expertise to help companies increase sales and profitability. He offers a ‘Free Consultation’ and can be reached from his contact page or by phone at 727-423-7536.
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