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If you’re an introvert, the idea of speaking in public in front of a large crowd can quickly tie your stomach into knots.
Here are some techniques and tips on how to prepare for a speech if this sounds like you.
1. Preparation is always the key
Practice makes perfect. Take your time crafting your speech so that it will flow naturally while also pushing forth your narrative clearly and concisely.
Afterwards, you can try practicing your speech in front of the mirror or recording yourself to see if you need to tweak your body language.
I also find visiting the venue beforehand helps you to mentally relax.
Try going to the podium and absorbing the environment while imagining it filled with people.
2. Take notes from the best
Another method to apply when it comes to mentally preparing for a big speech is by watching the pros do it.
Take cues from the experts, their mannerisms, how they present themselves, and how they interact with the crowd.
Try to imagine yourself in their shoes during their presentation to get a good grasp of what it’s like having an audience’s focus on you.
It is best if you can get a transcript of their speech so that you can further study and analyse how they constructed their presentation. Study how they opened and closed their speech as well as their pacing during the presentation.
3. Embrace your unique style
Understand your limitations as well as your strengths. While studying and taking notes from other speakers will significantly help you prepare, I advise against copying them beat by beat, especially if their style of public speaking is different to yours.
Make a note of your weaknesses and downplay them by taking the positives and accentuating them. Treat your speech as an extension of yourself and the words will flow much smoother.
4. A tried and tested method
Back when I was in primary school, our teacher gave us a tip on how to stop that immobilising fear when speaking in front of a crowd.
Surprisingly enough, to this day, I am still using that technique whenever my nerves are getting the best of me before a presentation.
That is, imagine something funny and replace the audience with that image. It doesn’t work for everyone, but for me it significantly calms any anxiety down to a manageable level.
Public speaking is already quite a challenging hurdle without being an introvert.
As an introvert, the idea of speaking in front of a large crowd is mentally draining. What’s more, when you’re on the podium under the bright spotlight.
However, I guarantee you, it can be accomplished. Follow the tips written above when preparing for your speech and you will be amazing.