Wednesday, January 16th, 2019

7 Sure-Fire Ways to Boost Your Public Speaking Confidence

By Narges Nirumvala on Apr 03 2011 • Filed under The Power Communicator

Successful entrepreneurial women learn public speaking skills.

No one can give you confidence; it has to come from within. In one area in particular, it is essential to have confidence – public speaking. The average person is filled with dread when you put them in front of a podium or a room full of people. To be a successful business woman you can’t be average! You have to master public speaking and learn how to leverage it to promote your business and your brand. Although each of us has the ability to annunciate words to form speech, that does not mean that all of us possess the ability to speak in public. Speaking and public speaking are completely different things. In this month’s column I share seven easy ways to boost your public speaking confidence:

Practise, practise, practise!

Like anything in life, the more you do something, the more confident you get. Public speaking is no different.If you don’t have any speaking engagements or presentations lined up, then speak in front of friends, join a Toastmasters club or even speak in front of the mirror. No excuses – just do it!

Get feedback and act on it.

When you do have the opportunity to speak in front of other people, ask them for feedback and suggestions for improvement. You may not like what they have to say, but it will make you a better speaker. Why? Because you are not speaking for yourself, but for your audience, so what they have to say matters.

Build on your strengths.

As an executive speech coach, one thing I find fascinating, is that people always focus on their weaknesses and not their strengths. You will build on whatever you focus on – so it stands to reason that if you focus on your strengths you will develop them even further and be more successful as a result.

Silence your inner critic.

We all have that voice inside us that says “You’re going to make a fool of yourself,” or, “Oh God they’re all staring at me and I don’t know what to say!” The difference between an average public speaker and a great one is that the former listens to their inner critic and the latter talks back to their inner critic and says “Shut the hell up, it’s my turn to speak!”

Look the part.

This sounds self evident, but particularly for women it’s a big one. For men it’s easy, just put on a suit. For a business woman it can be more complicated. You need to strike a balance between professional, stylish and appropriate. Above all, your appearance needs to project credibility. Remember that public speaking is visual by its very nature, so how you present yourself is essential to your success.

Take a course.

When you stop learning, you die inside. Take self-development courses, attend webinars and read books and ebooks on a whole range of subjects on a regular basis. If you don’t have the time, then make the time. Invest in yourself – it’s worth it!

Believe in yourself.

If there’s only one thing you take out of this article it needs to be this – you must believe in yourself at all times. Why? If you don’t believe in yourself, your audience will see right through you.

Confidence is at the heart of every great human achievement. When it comes to public speaking, you have to decide who you are. Are you an average person who is going to be intimidated by public speaking and muddle your way through life without this essential skill? Or are you an entrepreneurial superstar, with the ability to communicate your message to the world? I know which one I am!


2 Comments

  1. Narges, i really enjoyed this article and found your tips most helpful. I enjoyed meeting you at the Women and Words conference this past weekend – especially enjoyed your workshop on Writing Articles for Profit and Promotion!

    Cheers,
    Violette

  2. Hi Narges, I sure learnt a lot from your article. Thanks. Particularly, silence your inner critic – that’s something I need to work on. I tend to focus on my weaknesses and not on my strengths, either. So that too is going to change from now-onwards; and like they say, “Practise makes perfect”, so your advise is well received and much appreciated.

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