In a recent article in Rise Magazine I was asked, ‘When faced with the prospect of presenting to a group of people, what are one or two things we can do to alleviate that fear?”
In my experience nerves or fear come from a lack of preparation (fear of forgetting what you are going to say) and a focus on yourself and your issues.
So firstly you have to acknowledge that the most interesting people to watch are those truly being themselves, you don’t have to present like someone else or how you think you should, it’s most engaging to present like you!
It helps to shift the focus to be on your information and do all that you can and then some to get ready.
When you have put the time in, researched, thought about your topic, written it out using the words that you naturally speak and then practised out loud, you get to a point where you have done all you can do. Then you just have to “give it up” and give it your best. If you have spent the time really thinking and preparing what to say then trust yourself and your intuition in the moment to read the room/audience and take your presentation where it needs to go.
Dr Louise Mahler in her book Resonate, talks about a mantra she uses for confidence. Looking at her audience before she speaks, she says, “I love you, I love you, I love you”.
It reminds your subconscious that you’re here for a reason, to deliver a message, whatever it is, that will allow your audience to achieve or understand something they didn’t know before, it reminds you that you are there with a purpose: to benefit this group.
It has to be an indisputable mantra though, it can’t be, “It’s going to be good, it’s going to be good” because your unconscious mind might say, “well it wasn’t last time!”
I use, “Let me be a blessing to this audience.”
So combined with having put in the work it helps to clarify my intent to bring something of value or interest to my audience and shifts the focus from relying on it being “all about me” and my personality.
Prepare, then take your time, slow down, breathe, anchor yourself then give it your best shot!
Speak from the heart… And like just about everything the more you do it the easier it gets!
Lisa McAskill / Creative Director at www.lisamcaskill.com.au