Fear of speaking in front of a group of people is a common fear and is an anxiety which a lot of people face. This can result in nervousness, slurred speech and is referred to as a term known as glossophobia. Fear of public speaking stems from the fear of being judged, being laughed at or making mistakes which will not be received well by the others. But there are many ways to overcome speech anxiety and the following are the top 6 of them.
1. Practice Regularly
One of the best and most effective ways to overcome speech anxiety is to practice regularly and thoroughly. Practice your lines in advance and try to speak in front of the mirror for the best practice. As you practice, you become more familiar with what you are saying and this gives you confidence. Confidence tends to reduce your anxiety.
2. Relaxation and Visualization
The best way to overcome any kind of fear is to practice visualization and relaxation. The more relaxed you are, then more confident you will speak and the less anxious will you feel. Try to visualize a huge crowd of people judging you and imagine them smiling and appreciating you. If you imagine them in a bad mood, then this will make you anxious. Take deep breaths whenever you feel even a little anxious.
3. Do Everything Right on the Day of the Speech
If you are late, not dressed well or not prepared on the day of the speech, then these factors too could add to your anxiousness thus it is a good idea to try and do everything right on that day. Make sure you wake up early, rehearse, reach the venue on time and practice relaxation just before the speech is about to start.
4. Start Strong
Make sure you give a very strong start to your speech. Don’t try to ease it but remember to start as loud as possible. Look at the crowd rather than looking down or away. When you look at the crowd, try not to look at anyone in particular but only the heads of people as making direct eye contact may make you nervous.
5. Don’t Worry about the Small Stumbles
Every speech has a few stumbles but if you pay attention to them or think that you have made a major mistake, then this will only make you more nervous and anxious. Avoid paying attention to small stumbles and keep going on without breaking the flow. Be confident and no body will even notice that you stumbled.
6. Remain Positive
It is important to remain positive not just before the speech but also during it. A single small negative thought can totally turn things around against you but a single positive thought can make you feel much confident and better about yourself. See yourself in a positive light and know that you can do it better than you think you can.