18 Jun Embracing Your Stage Fright
It’s not just you. Most people suffer from speaker anxiety. In my years of coaching and training clients, I’ve found that speaker anxiety can be greatly diminished simply by speaking on a regular basis and having the right tools in place when anxiety rears its ugly head.
Here’s what you may not realize. You don’t want to eliminate stage fright altogether. Anxiety is a great editing device. The synapses in your brain are firing and everything is in sharper focus. You can think more quickly on your feet and read the room more effectively. Audiences can tell that you’re engaged and ready to go. Many theatrical performers, at the top of their game, will hurl before going on stage—but that means their performance is important to them.
There are many causes of stage fright. The top three are when you’re faced with a surprise or something unexpected happens, when you’re unprepared or feeling that way, or when you believe there’s a lot riding on the outcome of your presentation. For women, I’d add a fourth: when you fear that you’ll be judged. Let’s tackle this problem.
“Embracing Your Stage Fright” is an excerpt from my new book, Out Front: How Women Can Become Engaging, Memorable and Fearless Speakers. You can pre-order your copy of Out Front here.