Public Speaking Need Not Be Frightening

By Ralph Lowe

Speaking in public is very difficult. There's a urban legend that the average person's number one fear, greater than the idea of death itself, is speaking publicly. This is complete and total fabricated malarkey. It's actually pretty funny that this cliche ever gets repeated at all when, if scrutinized even in the most modest of manners it falls apart. If any person were given the option between instantaneous death and speaking just a few words in presence of 50,000 people I am pretty sure the vast majority of people would say hand me the microphone!

There is a number of tricks of the trade to make speaking to the masses a little bit easier for the average speaker. One piece of advice is to pick out just a handful of people distributed throughout your audience, and instead of shifting gaze rapidly and at random to speak, instead, to just those chosen few individuals. This makes it so that you are narrowing the amount of people you feel that you're speaking to.

Though, be forewarned, one of the challenges inherent with speaking publicly is that people do not feel they have as much of an obligation to focus as when in a smaller group. If your individuals you have chosen out of the crowd appear obviously inattentive, just be sure to remember that out of the collective there absolutely will be a few individuals listening to some degree to what you have to say. Perhaps it is that those are the ones that still have enough caffeine in their bloodstream from breakfast.

Another important tip is to talk loudly! Often men and women stand up in front of their audience and simply lack the courage to speak loudly enough. When you stand up in front of your audience I want you to roar like a lion. Remember the phrase: "I will roar like a lion prior to the kill." It's frustrating for an audience to have to try and fail to listen to a presenter that has no idea whatsoever what the appropriate volume is to speak at when talking to a large number of people. If the volume issue persists people will eventually lose interest in what you have to say , and you'll have to suffer through very sleepy stares.

The final tip is the most necessary. It's the most common component people neglect and suffer the consequences of. Make sure to rehearse your presentation to the point of near nauseousness (ad nauseam). Every bit of suffering you pour onto yourself prior to your speech in the form of repeatedly rehearsing your presentation will pay off in spades.

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