When I was a teenager I was so shy I couldn't have done it. After a few attempts I was willing to stand up anywhere and talk.
Something you might like to know is that if you're using a microphone or standing in front of an audience, you need to be just a little bit larger than life. A normal conversational voice sounds a bit dull when you're out in front.
Just plunge in and enjoy the experience. You'll be surprised at how much fun it will become. Good luck to you.
Laughter is awesome. Before you begin, think of something funny to get good chemicals/endorphins flowing. Then perform for yourself. Whatever you're doing, focus on the task and the task only! Ignore their presence, by immersing yourself in the activity.
Remember, even if you make a mistake in front of people, you haven't done anything shameful. You're human. You're in the club! :)
This is something I had to learn to do as well. When I was in high school, I actually took a failing grade because I would not stand in front of the class to give a 2-3 minute speech. The teacher (who was not the nicest teacher) even gave anyone who had not prepared an easy way to pass the assignment (it was a pass or fail--no grade). All you had to do was come up and talk about anything. One girl took her make-up bag out of her purse and talked about how she applied her make-up. It was a simple assignment, but my fear of speaking-up got the better of me.
It was not until I was an adult that I could do so. It is a bit nerve wracking at first, but once you start, it gets easier. Be confident in what you are speaking about (most important---if you do not believe in your topic, no one else will), smile, speak loud enough so that all can hear. (more in comments)
Know your subject. Most nervousness comes from feeling insecure, inadequate or uninformed. If your talk is just about something you're good at, start there. Once you get passed that, go on to more complex matters. The example above about the makeup may be was what she was doing; she knew her subject, had some items to show, and was educating her audience. My first college public speaking topic I used was about the food coop I belonged to and what jobs I did for my required 4 volunteer hours a month. It went so well everyone asked questions later.
I never remember going through that, but I was raised speaking in front of people from about 6 years old. I had to do it at least once a month up until I was about 20. It s actually interesting and can be fun, watching the looks on peoples faces and wondering if their actually buying or even understanding what you're saying
The five fears: fear of failure, fear of looking foolish, fear of being wrong, fear of being unprepared, fear of fear itself. So here are fears, all labeled, that they told us to be aware of when I took a summer school course in speech (as in holding a) and if you use this as a check list you might be covering everything. Remember: you CAN succeed, You CAN live with appearing to some as a fool, you CAN research and make sure what you say or do is true, you CAN prepare, you CAN be aware of flashes of fear.
11 months ago
Last edited at 6:13AM on 1/7/2013
Ruben - God created each of us! We are all his children, each and everyone of us. He gave you the same value as everyone on this earth, he loves you as much as everyone on this earth, therefore you have the same right to express yourself as everyone on this earth. No one on this earth is any better than you and conversely, you are no better than everyone else on this earth. Practice makes perfect. Rock on Ruben!
None of the taking a deep breathe stuff works. Just fit in with people and try to be friends with everyone. Oral presentations, for example, were so easy for my in classes where I got to know everyone. It's more about being comfortable with the other people, then you'll naturally become a people person.
I used to hear several things: pretend the audience is full of animals and not people; imagine that a person you love and admire is watching you with the same love and admiration (no matter if its a person you do or do not know, even a celebrity); pretend everyone is naked; pretend they are all in their pajamas or underwear. (I dont get nervous much; I want to be an actor, so I am obviously not shy)
When you look at the crowd, don't make direct eye contact. Eye contact can cause nervousness because you know that people are staring at you, waiting for you to do something. So instead, look at a person's forehead. Also you can do acts that don't involve standing and talking. You could do a skit where you jump around a lot or something that doesn't involve eye contact. I took a speech and debate class, I know this stuff.
It was a same problem for me when I was teenager and also in University life. Then I overcame it by making friends, talking to them, asking them my lacking, and resolved my lacking in communication accordingly. The most importantly, I used to speak alone in front of a mirror, it really helps in building up confidence. Always be positive.
There is a professional group called Toastmasters that will have a club near you. Toastmasters has helped me overcome a fear of public speaking in about 3 months. Look up Toastmasters on Google, Ask, or other search engine and find the nearest club. They have regular weekly meetings and have opportunities to speak to the club each week. It is a wonderful group where you learn public speaking in a nurturing environment. The clubs teach you about most of the comments that have been submitted on this post!
Take it one step at a time :) If something scares you, do it! Once you try it, it won't seem that scary and you will loosen up with time. If you have to speak in public, it is good to write down what you want to say. You can ask family members to practice with you, it helps a lot. Do things out of your comfort zone and do not be discouraged if you do not succeed right away! I used to be extremely shy but now I can talk to anyone and I have no fear of performing or talking in front of people :) It took me some time but it was worth it.
+TIP:Try thinking about a pleasant memory(how you felt etc.)... then link that to a small movement(slightly touching your nose for example). Practice this until you doing that little move results in activating the pleasant feeling you felt. Whenever you are nervous, use this to calm yourself down :)
I just do what I have to do and try to enjoy it. What could happen, anyway? And I mean the good things that could happen. I could make a new friend or gain confidence and help others with the same problem. Things can go wrong, but the good outnumbers the bad.
I get nervous a lot at my basketball games!! I get so nervous thinking that I'm gonna make a huge mistake in front of everyone that's watching, and worse, I don't wanna disappoint my team and my coach, which puts even more pressure. But yesterday, I thought of stuff that made me laugh, and stuff that made me happy, and it actually kinda worked! I hope this suggestion helped you!! ;)