In February we are focusing on how to be confident in business. There are various external things that we can do to build our confidence, like making sure the outfit you wear to that all important meeting fits you well and complements your figure. You can follow a regular exercise routine to ensure that you have a good posture and you body is in decent shape – for sure a confidence booster at any age!
It does however happen that even with all of this in place, we get that knot in our gut as we walk up to the stage to deliver a speech, or we get up to do a deal-maker presentation. How do we control what is happening inside our bodies? This may sometimes have such a massive impact on our delivery and can ruin the whole presentation – no matter how well you have prepared!
We get that increased heart rate, dry mouth and sweaty palms feeling. Your mind goes blank, and you have a slight tremble. Do not worry about this – it is normal. Anxiousness or nervousness is a common phenomenon for people with social anxiety – that fear of getting up in front of a crowd.
Find your own way to relax before a meeting, speech, or presentation. Do deep breathing exercises, listen to music that will calm you down. Prepare well, practice your presentation, and use notes.
Prevent from using alcohol the night before, as it may have an effect on how you feel. Drink enough water and chew gum to feel hydrated and relaxed. Arrive early so you can take in the audience, the room, and the mood.
Another method is the 3-3-3 rule:
- Identify three sounds
- Move three body parts
- Notice three things in the room
When arriving at the microphone or front of the room, it is important to smile, move around (then no one will notice the trembling), have a good posture by standing straight with both feet on the ground.
If you then take a nice deep breath, speak slowly, use pauses and refer to your notes you will nail it! And even if you make a mistake, just repeat the sentence or information in another way to make sure the message comes across.
Remember to reward yourself after a presentation with a well-deserved coffee or a glass of wine! Not many people have a natural ability to get up and speak in front of an audience – you are not alone!