Nervous speaking in public? : Try this fearbuster: Work your body

work-your-body There are many reasons why people feel nervous before a presentation. In my experience, the more presentations you give, the more you are able to cope with most of the visible signs of nervousness:  sweating hands, dry throat, increased heart rate. I believe that while the nerves don’t go away, the fear does.  Let’s assume you haven’t had any traumatic past experiences while presenting in public (this needs a different approach), there are some proven steps you can take to lower your physical reaction before a presentation.

Let’s look at one approach: Work your Body.

A good physical condition will help manage your nerves.  Whatever exercise you enjoy most, schedule in a workout during the week before your presentation. Block off a couple of hours and add in a spa or massage afterwards. Pamper your body, it will help reduce your tension.

On the day of your presentation, take a walk outside or find somewhere quiet, like a garden or park, to breathe in some fresh air and get a bit closer to nature. It will calm your mind and the fresh air will improve your circulation.

A few hours before you present, stop drinking coffee, tea or sodas and switch to water. The more aerobic your body is the calmer you will feel.

Just before you come on stage, walk off your nerves and think about your opening words.  By starting your presentation from a walk you are turning your nervous energy into excitement which is a good way to open.

Make sure you have a good supply of water during your presentation. Take deep breathes between main points or sections to ensure you have a good lung full of air. This calms and also improves your voice quality.

While most people do feel nervous before a presentation, by keeping in good shape and taking a few simple precautions you can help your body cope better with the physical reactions to feeling nervous.

2 Responses to “Nervous speaking in public? : Try this fearbuster: Work your body”

  • Excellent, realistic and practical tips! I do do some public speaking from time to time and found your comments to be spot on.

  • I completely agree with these tips. When I first started presenting, my knees knocked together so badly I thought that the audience would notice. Now (2200+ presentations later), It’s all good. I don’t drink coffee within 6 hours of a presentation. It leaves my mouth too dry.

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