by Kerri Garbis, CEO Ovation
Do you feel a nervous, sweaty mess when you are presenting? Palms clammy, heart-thumping, a little weak in the knees? Whether speaking in front of a big crowd or presenting to a small audience, do your nerves try and get the best of you?
The good news is this fear happens to all of us – from speaking professionals and corporate leaders to seasoned board treaders or first-time lectern rookies. Overall, public speaking is the number one fear in the United States – topping other classic frighteners like clowns, snakes, spiders, and even death!
Luckily, there are Three Big Things you can do to effectively soothe your nerves and prepare for your moment in the sun without the shakes:
Mantra – Finding a daily mantra and speaking it aloud can reaffirm your self-confidence. “I am human, and mistakes are okay” or “I am good, and I am good enough” or whatever works for you! Make it your own! It is a practice that can ground you and remind you all will be okay no matter what tricky situation you find yourself.
Mind-Set Shift – Before you take center stage, take a moment to thoughtfully get your mind in place and discard other rambling notions in your brain. Remind yourself, “I am here” and “I am going to tell my story” or “I have something important to say today.” You can then become more centered in the moment for the task at hand.
Move – Move physically in your space. Whether you are sitting or standing or moving from one side of the stage to the other, or simply moving your arms to gesture, this can help calm nerves and gives your brain something to focus on rather than just the words coming out of your mouth.
These tips will go a long way towards prepping you for your next gig. Of course, none of these methods work without the fine art of learning to Breathe! Take a moment to practice effective breathing through the diaphragm. Place your hands on your belly button, take a deep breath in through your nose and fill the space in, hold for four counts and breathe out. Do this a couple of times and repeat anytime you feel a case of the butterflies coming on. Keep breathing – you got this!
Kerri Garbis is the Founder and CEO of Ovation and has trained hundreds of business professionals internationally throughout her career as a professional actress, entrepreneur, and speaking coach. She is a Professional Speech Writer certified by the Professional Speechwriters Association, a Business Etiquette Expert certified by The Emily Post Institute, an Emotional Intelligence Expert certified by The Hay Group, and the exclusive speaker training partner for Meeting Planners International. Her dedication to dynamic, user-tailored content has helped ensure that every Ovation consultant delivers the highest level of client-focused professional training. Visit www.getovation.com today to learn more.