Fear of Public Speaking

My coaching services and skills are being recognised in contributing into others opinion pieces such as The Meerkat Motivator.  They have put out an article on public speaking and my thoughts on the subject were included in the piece called Fear of Public Speaking: How to Deal with Presentation Anxiety

In my coaching I often encounter people with fears and anxieties.  Public speaking is one of the most common.  My contribution was:

Dealing with Nerves Before a Presentation: Breathe Deeply and Slow It Down

Roger Southam, High Performance Coach & International Speaker, CaribbeanMGT

One thing to realise is that 73% of people fear public speaking, which is greater than the number of people who fear dying.  That means more people would rather die than speak in public!  It is important to keep this focus and humour on this point can go a long way. 

Would you really rather die than speak to a group of people?  Are the audience going to be armed with guns and knives and take aim for every slip or dull sentence?  

Gaining perspective is vital.  It is only a presentation.  The world isn’t going to end, you won’t be attacked.  

How do you feel watching a presentation?  Are most of the audience going to be encouraging?  Harness the good thoughts, the positive images and build on that.

Prepare your topic and feel comfortable.  Calm the voices in your head that are doubting and challenging you. Take control and go and enjoy – okay enjoyment won’t be there for a while but I have had clients where enjoyment was the outcome!  

If you have a panic attack breathe deeply and however slow you think you are breathing slow it down further.  Take stock and use your notes to lead you.

Make a quip to garner empathy from the audience.  “I would rather be where you are now, mind you I know what’s coming and I want to hear it again!” 

If the nerves are bad then make sure you seek help; a good coach can eradicate the fears and give you strength and focus to be your best.

Get Help

You don’t have to suffer with any fear or anxiety, treatment can be sought.  Why would anyone want to suffer when the solutions are achievable and proven?  Utilising a variety of techniques and activities it is possible to make the anxieties evaporate and fade away.  Creating a bolder, sharper you that can accomplish and achieve beyond your expectations.