This is the conclusion to our series The Fear of Public Speaking. I hope you have found these tools useful and are noticing a difference in your stress level when it comes to speaking. Here are the final tips..
5) Dress for Success. Appearance matters. Often times we underestimate the impact of how we look. Feeling great about how you look gives you that extra edge to be able to speak to people with confidence. So when you have to speak to someone, put on your favorite outfit, iron your clothes, shine your shoes, and hopefully it will be a good hair day!!!
6) Carry a special object or personal item. For at least the first 8 years that I was a professional speaker, I always carried this little green stone in my pocket. This stone symbolized all the hard work I had gone through, all the love I had for what I was speaking about, and all the support I had gotten from people in my life. It gave me courage. I never spoke in public without that stone. I highly recommend that you find something that works for you. Something you can hold on to, or just know that it’s there to keep you in your heart and calm.
7) Visualize what you want. After 15 years of being a speaker I still use this tool. I always visualize how I want a presentation to go. Not only that, but I visualize how I want a conversation with my husband to go, or with my kids. I visualize how I want a difficult phone call to go, or a meeting with a potential client to go. This is a powerful tool that actually helps to generate the results you want. It doesn’t even take very long. 5 minutes can help transform your focus and energy.
8) Give yourself a break. The most important thing to remember is that we are all in a learning process. There are no rights or wrongs, no good or bad. We are just who we are, perfect in our own way. Giving yourself a break is the most important message I could leave you with. If it doesn’t work out perfectly, then try again. The word “mistake” is actually a term from archery and it means “missed the mark”. Often times we make mistakes and we beat ourselves up. If you can view your mistakes as simply “missing the mark”, and chose to re-aim and shoot again, you’ll find your life working better and easier.
9) Celebrate yourself. One of the hardest things for us to do as human being is to celebrate our accomplishments. It is vital that you learn how to do this for yourself, the big stuff and the little stuff. This creates energy on the subconscious level and sends a message out to the Universe that says, “Send me more good stuff”. So the next time you take a risk and public speak, whether it’s a big function or one on one, congratulate yourself. Tell yourself “way to go me”. Often times we look to others to give us this kind of attention. But did you ever get a compliment and you brushed it off? This is usually because we negated the statement in our minds. Celebrating yourself opens us up to the opportunity to take in others compliments much easier, because we are already giving it to ourselves.
10) Cultivate an attitude of gratitude. As with celebrating yourself, being grateful attracts more of it into your life. Even if the situation doesn’t turn out exactly the way we would like it to, be thankful about the opportunity at hand to continue to grow and learn about you.
This concludes our series. So go hunt down some opportunities to speak, whether in a group or to another person. Exercise the muscles that you have developed in these articles. Practice makes perfect, so go try it on and see how it fits for you.