How to overcome fear of public speaking

I wanted to give you guys a couple of quick tips for dealing with the fear of public speaking.

In a quick post I won’t be able to dive into the depths of what causes this fear in the first place, as it relates to deeper fears around rejection and abandonment, and cognitive biases and fallacies like “the spotlight effect”.

But I did want to share a couple of practical things just for dealing with it in the moment. There’s 2 main things you can do.

One is you need to warm up. A lot of people go from zero to 100 with public speaking. So they’re sitting there in silence for half an hour and then they go into a high pressure job interview. Mentally, that’s such a huge leap.

You want to be having individual conversations prior to the public speaking event. Make sure you’re talking to people 1-to-1 and you’re really warmed up socially, even if it’s just on the phone with someone, so that when you step into the group situation it’s only a little step up in discomfort.

The second thing is once you’re in the group situation continue having 1-to-1 discussions by making eye contact with individuals as you talk. Talk to one person at a time rather than addressing the big mass group.

It’ll make it all a little bit easier.

2 Responses

  1. Attending groups as a participant (rather than a leader), and contributing little bits also helps develop courage in this area

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