Advice for nervous speakers

6 Nov , 2013 Blog,Food for Thought,Tips and Ticks

I have usually winged it when it comes to presenting and pitching but truthfully I do still get really nervy and self conscious about it (hardly surprising with poor preparation). But I do really think that these nerves hold you back from delivering your best performance, so here is a tip that hopefully will help you in the same way it helped me. In the last week I have delivered a video of myself pitching a business idea to the Bath Dragons Den competition as well as creating a Crowdfunder video. The nerves of performing have noticeably become easier and easier with all this exposure to the camera and I wanted to urge you to try it out as well!

Watching yourself back can be excruciating, as you notice all the things you don’t like about the way you hold yourself, talk, hesitate, move etc. You never notice these things in daily life because you’re obviously not looking on yourself objectively, but recording yourself enables you to look on them and find the bits that you do and don’t like. From there, you can cut out the bits you hate and make them more like the bits you do like! It may be horrible but soldier on, no pain no gain eh?

Next time you have speech or presentation don’t practice in the mirror as its just not the same. You’re looking at yourself in real time so you’re focusing on the now and not on the bits you would improve. Make sure you open windows movie maker (or equivalent), record your presentation and watch it back to yourself and ask yourself, how would I be less embarrassed watching this back? Then try it again..

I am set to deliver a session on web coding skills in a couple of weeks which will be the biggest/longest presentation that I have ever done by about ten times but I know now that I will feel at least a bit more comfortable having braved the camera before hand.

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