3 Powerful Tips To Control Pre-Speech Performance Anxiety

February 17, 2017

performance anxiety helpMost of us tend to experience some performance anxiety before delivering a speech, whatever the occasion. Public speaking is considered to be one of the greatest fears of all. Speech anxiety symptoms may be as minor as slight nervousness or as extreme as debilitating fear. Affected individuals may suffer from sweating, shaking, dry mouth, squeakiness of voice, butterflies in stomach, and increased heartbeat.

It may not be possible to completely get rid of speech related performance anxiety; however there are many ways in which patients can overcome it and even turn it around so as it becomes beneficial for them.

Discussed below are 3 tips that can help control pre-speech performance anxiety:

1. Get enthused about the speech: All of us are able to talk about a movie that we like or some other topic of interest to a group of people for a long time without experiencing any performance anxiety. The same holds true when singing a song at karaoke in front of strangers, but speech anxiety takes over during an audition, etc. So find a reason that makes you excited about the speech that you will give later. For example, if you are going to talk about your book then think of it as an exciting step to realization of your dreams.

2. Visualize something pleasant: Speech anxiety often occurs due to the fact that you speak in front of strangers and that you are anxious about the judgment and reciprocal applause from the audience. All these factors can be put away by ensuring that you remain happy when giving the speech. This can be done by visualizing the presence of your partner, family, or friends in the audience. You may also keep a picture of your love on the photo and pause to have a look at it whenever you feel performance anxiety.

Visualization can be accompanied by physical movement on the stage as well as controlled breathing. This will help a great deal. Moving about the stage can help clear and realign the thoughts, reduce the pace of the speech, avoid confusion, and distract you from performance anxiety. Taking deep slow breaths also helps decrease the heart rate as well as slow down the speech to normal conversational levels.

3. Correct and fine-tune the speech: Rehearse the speech many times over, with proper articulation and projection, till it is near perfection. It is not possible to memorize an entire speech (speaking from wrote-memory is not recommended); but rehearsing the speech can help finesse it, thereby reducing the chances of goofing up and almost eliminating performance anxiety.

It may also be noted that you are the only one who knows what the speech is all about. Thus, even if you goof up the audience will not know about the mistakes. Remember this fact and make it a motto to completely eliminate speech anxiety.

Besides rehearsing, it is vital to get adequate sleep. Staying awake the night before the speech and preparing will only exhaust the mind and trigger anxiety when the actual time comes. Hence, sleep well the night before.

Do You Get Performance Anxiety? Share Your Experiences Below In The Comment Section.

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10 comments on “3 Powerful Tips To Control Pre-Speech Performance Anxiety

  1. Kelly Feb 17, 2017

    I will have to try this out the next time I deliver a speech – which admittedly, is not very often at all, but I would eventually like to give presentations about our world cycle trip, so it’s something I will need to overcome at some point. I don’t remember having this fear when I was really young, but it developed at some point during high school and has just gotten worst since then.

    • In school an F means a failure so we do everything we can in our power to avoid failing. We become perfectionist that aren’t perfect at anything. We create daily routines that keep us from failing, but never truly move us to a place of cognitive and behavioral flexibility, which is freedom.

  2. Michael Mar 4, 2017

    The writer must be addressing me in particular! Pre-Speech Performance Anxiety has been my major problem in terms of public speaking. Though I never got to know the exact name of what I’ve been passing through, but with the explanation here, I’m pretty sure it’s Pre-Speech Performance Anxiety. I will try to practice the tips above. I’d hope it will be of help to me. Thanks so much!

  3. Alice Mar 17, 2017

    Oh I know this feeling SO well!

    Sometimes I have to speak for work, and I get incredibly nervous – feel like I’m going to throw up. It’s awful.

    It does help to be very prepared and know my material.

    I’ll implement your other two tips next time. Thanks.

  4. I really liked your tip to rehearse what you are going to say over and over again to make sure that everything is done correctly and has the right tone of voice. This would make things a lot simpler for the person delivering the speech. My cousin might like this piece of advice since she was looking into this and anxiety therapy to overcome her fears.

  5. I think visualizing something pleasant can help a lot for anxiety before giving a speech, or in any situation. I’ll have to remember to do that more whenever I feel anxiety coming on. Visualizing people who you love is a great idea. It can help you feel relaxed and comforted.