How To Prepare For Public Speaking
The thought of public speaking is likely to make anyone anxious. But the level of your anxiety could be lessened if you are prepared with the speech. Public speaking entails not only your speech but also your public presence. You may have questions about how you would stand on a podium in front of an audience, what you would say to them, what kind of body language you would use, etc. But with a good preparation and practice you would be able to deliver a good, effective speech.
You have to know the following information in order to prepare yourself: Your topic, duration of speech, type of your audience and your presentation plans. Based on this information start gathering the relevant information from sources such as books, Internet or incidents from your personal life. You may be able to convey about three or four ideas in your speech. These vital ideas would be your key points. You could prepare an outline of the speech you are going to make and use some incidents and quotations and graphics as supporting materials.
Once you have your materials in order you have to practice the speech. You could rehearse in front of a mirror. By watching yourself in the mirror, you could observe your body language – your facial expressions and postures. Video taping yourself and checking it would help you improve in the problem areas.
Some key points while making the speeches are:
Opening of the speech – A good beginning would gain the full attention of your audience. Your speech should benefit them or else they would not be interested in listening to you.
Posture – Do not show your audience that you are nervous. Your posture would give you away if you do not find your center of balance. Do not fidget or sway and move about. These are the signs of nervousness. Stand with your feet firmly planted about your shoulder width apart. Keep your chin up and stand straight. Let your hands rest by your sides and maintain your calm. Give a steady speech and maintain eye contact with the audience at all times. Smile more often.
Your voice – maintain a steady pace and talk slower to be clear when you speak.
Relax – If you know your topic well, you could relax. Before the speech, take a few deep breaths and do some stretching to divert your mind and release your anxiety. Smiling helps to hide your anxiety. Maintain a relaxed feeling throughout your speech. Once you start well and see your audience settled in their seats, you should be able to relax.
Concluding your speech – You could conclude your speech by summarizing the key points. This would help your audience to remember your speech. You could ask for audience participation by allowing them to ask you questions. If you have a passion for your subject, know your topic, possess organized, supportive material and have a sense of humor, then you could breeze through your speech with ease and you would sound like a natural at public speaking, just like Richard Hadick and other professional speakers!