Let’s face it, it’s not even possible to not feel nervous. That scary feeling of getting on stage for public speaking is nothing out of the ordinary for introverts, but let’s look at a couple methods we might be able to use to lessen its impact.
SHORT TIPS FOR GETTING YOURSELF STAGE- READY
There’s an art to finding the balance between pushing yourself out of your comfort zone and maintaining your confidence level. You want to explore your possibilities, but at the same time, it’s probably not the smartest idea to scare yourself too much to the extent that you never want to do this again. When it comes to getting yourself on stage, here are some tips you can follow.
- Spread out your speeches. I never book two speeches on the same day; that’s just asking for a disaster. That said, you don’t want to have too long of a break in between speeches or you’ll get rusty.
- Distinguish speech patterns and pursue practice one method at a time. Speeches, broadcasts, film recordings, TV interviews . . . they all involve public speaking, but the skills needed for each platform are very different. I usually pick one category to practice, such as live speeches, where the audience cares more about a lively atmosphere, and when I’ve gotten that type down pat, I’ll challenge myself again with another category, for instance, broadcast interviews in which pronunciation and tone matter more. If I’m not feeling my performance is 100-percent fluid and decide to go ahead with another category anyway, I may just end up raising my risk of screwing up during performances because my proficiency and acumen isn’t polished. If this is the case, I have to increase the time I spend preparing.
- Look for and harness positive reinforcement. Introverts are prone to reflecting on every single moment. Each time I finish a speech, I often replay the mental tape of it in my head, sometimes I even feel regret and despair while obsessing about which part of the speech I could have done a better job on, which parts weren’t so witty, which parts I had clearly practiced but couldn’t seem to nail down while on stage . . . In fact, in my case, I even write down what I think I did wrong as a sort of reference to review later on. At the same time, I try to remember not to get stuck in reflections too long. I’ll sometimes look around at the audience seeking signs of positive feedback. I’m looking for encouragement, a recommendation, or a positive evaluation from the event organizer, all of which are motivators to keep me moving forward.