Saturday, October 22, 2011

Have you expereinced stage fright?

Have you experienced stage fright when you make public speaking? While studying in America, you have at least one presentation each class. No one should be surprised to hear that the fear of public speaking is the number-one fear for even business professional. Comedian Jerry Seinfeld said, “Remember the next time you’re at a funeral that most people would rather be in the coffin than delivering the eulogy.” It is said that picturing the audience in their underwear is a good strategy to get rid of unnecessary fear in public speaking.

As international students, speaking in front of people would be much harder than others due to your language proficiency. However, just remember you are not the only one who is fearful of speaking in public. Everybody is in the same boat on the stage to a greater or lesser extent. English native speaking students are also nervous when they don’t prepare enough for the presentation.

Keep in mind the importance of preparation and practice before the presentation. Career coach Eli Amdur accentuated the three P’s rule. It was “Prepare, Prepare, and Prepare!” Even if you are not a perfect English speaker, enough preparation and practice will make you feel relaxed and competent.

I also recommend you write a speech script for your entire presentation and read out looking yourself into the mirror until you get confident. If you have time to record your rehearsal, you can check your pronunciation, voice, pace, tone, physical gestures such as eye contact and hand movement. However, the most important thing is “Don’t worry too much. Everybody is not perfect on the stage. Believe you! Only practice will make you a great public speaker!”

Marcia Brady is talking about how to combat stage fright in this video clip.

I hope this video clip will be helpful for you to reduce your anxiety of presentation.
I want to add two points for overcoming your stage fright.

First, you should believe in your ability to deliver your performance. Don’t worry too much before the presentation.
Second, you should accept your audience’ response as it is. Don’t be frustrated even if you make a mistake this time. You can do better next time.

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