The Art of Public Speaking | 7 Ways to Improve Your Skills
Public speaking is like a nightmare to all those who don’t often give a chance to it. They would prefer dying over going on stage and saying a few sentences.
Jumping out of a window? Fine. Public speaking? Yikes! Even the thought of public speaking, which is sometimes considered one of the greatest (and most common) fears, can make your heart beat faster and your palms sweat. That may sound a bit too much, but it makes sense when you consider it.
Public speaking is one occasion where you run the danger of widespread rejection, and it’s no surprise that our body fills with dread whenever we hear about it. It’s our natural survival instinct.
Nonetheless, today, in every realm of life, in any corner of the world, whether teaching a list of verbs that start with the letter W or expressing your opinion in a group, public speaking is a necessary talent. And for this reason, we are here with numerous approaches to overcome this glossophobia and learn multiple ways to produce a great speech.
Significance of Public Speaking
Different people have different phobias and if you are suffering from fear of public speaking, then let me tell you, my friend, you are not alone! 77% population in this world are in the same boat when it comes to elocution.
Whether you are in a business meeting, declamation contest, giving a speech at a friend’s wedding, motivating volunteers at a charity event, or honoring a loved one at a funeral, public speaking is a valuable talent, indeed!
Even if you don’t give public speeches regularly, acquiring good oratory abilities will help you deal with and boost your general confidence in emotionally or stressful circumstances.
- It can help you express your ideas.
- It displays your knowledge and influences the audience.
- It assists you in remaining organized and improves your interpersonal communication skills.
- It can avoid misunderstandings between family and friends, preventing loneliness and social anxiety.
Tips to Become a Better Public Speaker
Many people do not learn to talk confidently in school, although it is one of the most critical skills for career success.
We have brought the seven ideal tips that can pave your path to start building that confidence.
Understand Type of Presentation
It has been studied that the first step towards being a clear and effective public speaker is comprehending the type of presentation you are going to deliver. Determine whether it is persuasive, ceremonial, demonstrative, or informative speaking and try to differentiate between them because each type has a different approach.
Know your Audience
Take your time to learn about your audience before giving a presentation so you can personalize your speech to them. Consider what they care about and what they are most likely to find useful.
Your approach will be influenced by the type of event at which you’ll be speaking. For instance, a debate competition will have a different presentation compared to your speech at a graduation ceremony.
Tone and Breath Control
Diaphragmatic breathing is a good way to manage your voice. It can help you speak with more power and clarity and reduce anxiety-related shortness of breath. It controls three aspects of speaking; tone, pitch, and volume
The audience’s response depends on how you engage with them through not only content but specifically with facial expressions, gestures, and body movement. Standing straight and producing slight gestures are the perfect way to sound confident. Below are a few tips for developing good body language.
Moreover, greet people with a smile and keep eye contact with them to know where you are heading and how interested people are in your content. In short, it is the immediate feedback from the public!
Add Humour or Stories
Audiences typically enjoy a personal touch in a speech. You can inject stories, too, to keep people engaged. You will surely captivate your audience’s attention if you incorporate an amusing tale in your presentation.
Start slow and take minor pauses while speaking to influence your audience. Meanwhile, you can gather your thoughts before making the final appeal: delay before the utterance, consider what you want to say, and then make your final appeal with increased pitch.
This pause will prepare the listener to hear your message and allow your audience’s attention to rest.
While speaking in public, be yourself and act normal. If your personality shows through, you’ll receive greater appreciation, and your audience will believe what you’re saying.
So, if it is your first opportunity in a public speaking competition as a high school student, then shaking hands and racing heart are normal reactions to such an experience.
But that does not necessarily mean you will suck at it. Of course, it’s your first time; no one expects you to be pro at it while being in the initial stages. So, gear yourself, start rehearsing in front of a mirror, and allow the adrenaline rush to cause you to sweat, making you more attentive and ready to perform your best.