Did you know that nearly 30% of adults in the U.S. have some form of glossophobia. In fact, it ranks #1 in America.
Is this contagious? Only, if you’re terrified of speaking in public! Glossophobia is the fear of public speaking.
If the thought of public speaking terrifies you, don’t worry you have plenty of company.
Comedian Jerry Seinfeld says that more people are afraid of public speaking than death, adding that people would rather be in the coffin than the one giving the eulogy.
Is there a remedy, and how does one overcome this fear?
CEO Greg Lindberg knows full well this fear and has tackled it head-on. As a CEO, he is constantly engaged in public speaking, whether he is being interviewed, participating in a panel, or giving a presentation to employees. Greg Lindberg practically lives with a microphone in his hand.
He offers the following tips for the many, who are apprehensive of talking out loud to a crowd:
Breathe: Deep breathing is a tool to use before and during a presentation to ensure you don’t panic and remain calm. It allows you to project better and it also keeps your voice consistent.
Prepare: Winging it, is the worst thing you can do. Practice the presentation multiple times in front of some sort of an audience to replicate the experience. Improvisation is not a public speaker’s friend, and usually leads to errors. The more you know what you’re going to say, the more confident you will be in a public setting.
Don’t Rely on PowerPoint: It has its place, but Greg Lindberg advises not to rely on PowerPoint. It may limit your energy, and the audience will focus on the slides rather than you.
Wow Them at the Beginning and the End: Start your presentation with an interesting or personal story that will engage the audience, and conclude with one, as well. While the middle is important, it’s the beginning and end that will make or break the speech or presentation.
Be Yourself: Don’t be someone you aren’t. It’s OK to research other speakers, but don’t try to be them. Be yourself and the audience will likely follow.