Did you know the average person ranks the fear of public speaking higher than the fear of death? And yet overcoming this fear can be the key to a long and successful career. In business, it’s essential to be able to get your point across. Whether we’re giving a formal presentation to a large audience or asking our bosses for a promotion, speaking skills are essential to getting ahead in life.
Here are more nine tips for overcoming your fear of public speaking:
1. Public speaking classes
Find a great coach or mentor. There are many groups you can join to learn the art of public speaking. A group such as the non-profit Toastmasters helps people with their fear by giving them an opportunity to practice.
2. Do some exercise
Light exercise before a presentation can get your blood circulating and send oxygen to your brain. Take a walk before a speech or do a few knee bends.
3. Use PowerPoint to your advantage
Sometimes a PowerPoint presentation can be your best friend. It can save you if you lose your train of thought, keep your audience engaged and highlight your main points.
4. Realize that even Warren Buffett had public speaking anxiety
Buffett got over his fears by teaching investing principles to people twice his age. He forced himself to talk to people. He practiced these skills over and over again.
5. Sip warm or room temperature water
Sometimes squeezing some lemon into your water helps as well. This will lubricate your throat. Try to avoid sugary beverages, which can dry out your mouth and make it harder to speak.
6. Read Eloquence in Public Speaking by Kenneth McFarland