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Tuesday, January 11, 2011

In Part 1 last December we wrote about 5 tips extracted from our stage fright section of our “Public Speaking and Presentation Skills” workshop:

1.             Realize how your audience really feels
2.             Visualize success
3.             Change your physical state so that you affect your mental state
1.             PPP- Practice Practice and Practice
2.             Arrive early
Here are 5 more tips to help you overcome stage fright:
1 - Mingle with your audience
Before your speech, try to talk to your audience in any subject. The effect of mingling is tremendous; you will then feel as if you are talking to your friends, which in most situations is very easy. The audience will also feel more relaxed.
2 - Involve your audience
Whether you are doing a technical presentation, or a marketing pitch, involving your audience by asking them a question or giving them something to do will release speaking related tensions. The pressure will be distributed among the presence as you will not be the only centre of attention. However you have to be careful not to loose control by asking a controversial question or stepping out of the subject.
3 -  Enlighten and entertain
The stronger your topic is, the more powerful your pitch line is, the more original your speech is, the least anxiety you will feel. Bring something new that your audience doesn't really know. Shock them at the beginning of your presentation, grab their undivided attention.

4 - Don’t look nervous
 I was surprised to learn that some of the most influential speakers on this planet are nervous every time they give a speech. They however do not show it. If your hands shake then don’t use a thin paper for your notes, use instead some thick note cards that will not shake every time you tremble. Do not use complicated long sentences, as those will increase the chance of revealing your nervousness.
5 - Make them laugh
Give yourself and the audience the permission to have fun. By having fun, time passes quickly, the audience learns more and you will feel happy at the end of your presentation. Having fun doesn't mean you have to be a clown. When saying a joke, or a funny comment, make sure that it is politically and culturally correct.
Camil El Khoury
For more information about our in-house and open “Public Speaking” programs drop us a line on and do not forget to check our Public Speaking and Presentations skills public program in Beirut this January 27th and 28th.




Posted By Ideas Group at
10:58 - AM
Friday, December 10, 2010

Part 1

Does your heart pounds, your hands shake, your forehead sweats, your mouth goes dry and your stomach feels like a blender on high speed every time you are about to speak or present to a group?

Well the good news is that you are in the majority, and that almost everybody shows the same symptoms when they are asked to speak or present to a large group. Even the most experienced speakers still feel stage fright at times.

The other good news is that with simple techniques you can use stage fright to your advantage.

Below are 5 tips extracted from our stage fright section of our “Public Speaking and Presentation Skills” workshop:

1. Realize how your audience really feels
Although presenting or speaking seems like a test in front of a jury, however almost every audience wants you to succeed for the simple reason that you might have the knowledge/information they want. Try to remember the last time you were a member of the audience and the speaker does a small mistake; we all empathise with the speaker.

Another known fact is that the audience does not know you are afraid. All you have to do is treat the audience members like individuals or maybe like your best friends.

2. Visualize success
Just imagine yourself performing a task successfully. Apply visualizing techniques to your speech. Imagine yourself giving your talk. Your voice fills the room with wisdom. People in the audience hang on every word you say. They give you a standing ovation and rush to the stage to ask you private questions.

3. Change your physical state so that you affect your mental state
The below exercises will release most of the tension you might have before giving your speech.

  • Breathe: Take a deep breath. Hold it. Hold it. Now let it out slowly. Do it again
  • Stretch: Head rolls - turn head from side to side, arm lifts - stretch your right arm up into the air as far as it will go. Hold it a few seconds. Bring it back to your side. Now stretch your left arm. Keep repeating the exercise.
  • Jaw breakers: Open your mouth as wide as possible, and then close your mouth. This exercise helps relieve tension in the jaw.
  • Move around: Climb some stairs have a small walk, however be careful not to do it abruptly as you don't want any members of the audience to notice you.

4. PPP- Practice Practice and Practice
Steve Jobs might seem like a natural speaker, however the fact is, that he spends a lot of time practicing his speech prior to any event; and that is why he seems natural.
Stage fright appears at the very beginning and at the very end of your act, so write out your introduction and conclusion and practice it until you have it down cold, because if you do so you’ll reduce your anxiety. Anticipate problems and prepare solutions – for example, whenever you stumble over a tongue-twisting name or phrase, you can have an all-purpose recovery line ready, “let me try that again – in English.”

5. Arrive early
The fear of the unknown probably produces more anxiety than any other cause. Until you get to the site where you’re speaking you face a lot of unknowns/questions. Is the room set up correctly? Did they remember to give you an overhead projector? You can get the answers simply by going to the room, so do it early. Arriving early will also give you the chance to practice your speech on location for a last time and thus familiarising your self with the speaking environment and thus aiding your visualisation process.

Camil El Khoury
For more information about our in-house and open “Public Speaking” programs drop us a line on

Posted By Ideas Group at
08:11 - AM
Public Speaking | ideas groupideas group is a global learning and human capital development firm specialized in leadership, team development and learning business process outsourcing BPO. We help our clients become high performance organizations and foster a sustainable growth.