Everyone should get nervous when they speak in public. I’d be more concerned if you weren’t at least a little nervous.
Here are 3 tips for helping you manage your nerves:
1. Prepare well. This should include; Really understanding your content. Think deeper knowledge rather wider. Allocate time to consider your audience, their expectations and how you your presentation can assist them. Some people over prepare. Most people tend to under prepare. Have a plan and stick with it. Practice standing up. Receive feedback from trusted sources. Work on having a strong start and a better finish.
2. Don’t overplay the importance of the presentation. If you start to think that it’s make or break for your career you put unnecessary pressure on yourself. No one’s career should be defined by a single presentation. In fact, within a few days of your presentation the audience will struggle to recall 80% of it. Take the middle road. Yes, you want it be successful. Yes, you will prepare well. Yes, you are already very good at your job, that’s why you have been given the opportunity to present.
3. Use positive self-talk. Listen to the athletes. “I’m really looking forward to the next game”. “I’m excited about the opportunity”. Speak positively to yourself. Be kind on yourself. You’d be surprised how much it can help.