Public Speaking Lab

How to Build Resistance to Fear and Nerves Public Speaking?

We’ve all heard it a million times – “the fear of public speaking.” It’s often hailed as one of the most significant fears out there. So, you’ve probably been told that you can conquer the fear of public speaking. But, let’s be crystal clear – you can’t get rid of it. Fear and nervousness are natural responses our bodies have to stress-inducing situations, and public speaking is one such scenario. It’s completely natural to be apprehensive about being judged, embarrassing ourselves, and of failing. But here’s the twist – you don’t have to let fear shackle your potential. What if I told you that there are ways to build resistance to fear and nervousness so that you can speak in public with confidence?

It may seem contradictory, but one of the techniques that can help you tackle your fear and nerves in public speaking is to practice your presentation in a public place or in front of small groups. You can also practice in front of a camera to watch yourself. It is also important to focus on your message and not your fear and try viewing fear as your ally.

Let’s dive in to some of our favorite techniques to ensure your fear doesn’t sabotage your public speaking abilities.

1. Practice in a public space 

One bold move to build resistance to fear is to practice your presentation in a public place where people can observe you. That’s right; it may sound intimidating, but trust me, it’s a game-changer. 

By subjecting yourself to public scrutiny during practice, you’re mimicking the fear and nervousness you’ll feel in a real presentation. Think a park, a coffee shop, or even a library – anywhere with an audience. The more you do this, the more your body and mind adapt and grow resilient and you´ll feel less afraid and nervous when it’s time to give your presentation.

2. Speak in front of small groups 

The finest way to build resistance to fear and nervousness is through gradual exposure. Start small, speaking in front of modest groups and steadily work your way up to larger audiences.

3. Watch yourself 

Always -and I mean always– practice with a camera rolling and ensure you can watch yourself. This is an incredible tool in your arsenal. Seeing yourself on video is like taking a front-row seat to your own performance. It enables you to perceive your strengths and weaknesses. Maybe you’ll spot nervous habits like fidgeting or pacing, or perhaps you’ll notice a hint of shakiness in your voice. By doing this you can spot your strengths and weaknesses, refine your delivery, and grow comfortable with the idea of being watched. 

4. Focus on your message, not your fear.

When you’re giving a presentation, it’s important to focus on the message you want to deliver, not your fear. You’re there to share something valuable with your audience. Stay fixed on the message, and don’t let anxious thoughts distract you.

5. Fear: Your Unlikely Ally

Yes, you read that right – fear can be your ally! 

In reality, fear can sharpen your senses, intensify your concentration, and make you more alert. Rather than seeing fear as an adversary, think of it as a turbo-boost to your performance. That knot in your stomach is a sign that you’re about to achieve something remarkable. Embrace it, and let it propel you forward.

Don’t let fear keep you from making your voice heard and sharing your brilliance with the world. It’s time to take that mic, step onto that stage, and own it like the confident rockstar you are! With these strategies, you can transform fear from a paralyzing foe into a dynamic ally that fuels your best performances. It’s all about recognizing that fear is part of the package deal in public speaking.

To bring it all together, fear of public speaking is a common struggle, and it’s not something that magically vanishes with experience. Instead of fighting to eliminate fear, embrace it, understand it, and turn it into your superpower. By practicing in public spaces, with small groups of people, utilizing video feedback, and viewing fear as your ally, you can harness its energy and become a dynamic, confident speaker.

So, remember, the next time you’re gearing up for a public speaking gig, you’ve got a powerful partner in your corner – fear! Take the stage, own the room, and let your brilliance shine through.