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July 19, 2021

6 Ways to Cope with Public Speaking Anxiety

6 Ways to Cope with Public Speaking Anxiety

Public speaking anxiety is one of the most common phobias that keep your authentic self from surfacing around in public. What once has been your passion may now be your worst nightmare.

Not many people are courageous enough to step up onto the stage and sweep the crowd off their feet. Use words so exhilarating that they cannot keep themselves from giving you roaring applause. Who doesn't want a room full of the audience cheering while talking publically. 

Public speaking may or may not be a dream for many, but for those it is, they may not express their passion for this because of public speaking anxiety or glossophobia. 

Read further to learn how one can cope with public speaking anxiety using six recommended ways.

Woman afraid to speak in public

How Can One Cope with Public Speaking Anxiety?

While some may spend their entire life keeping their anxiety to themselves, others try hard to cope with public speaking anxiety. For people who are not willing to give up on their desire to get rid of this phobia, we have gathered some suggestions that work best for coping with public speaking anxiety.

But before we talk about those suggestive ways, let's first have a look at what glossophobia is and what are its common symptoms.

What's Glossophobia?

Glossophobia is a term used to refer to anxiety that people tend to feel when making a speech in public. It's a fear of facing people as one makes a speech on social platforms.

While some people may overlook this phobia, certain ways of glossophobia or public speaking anxiety may surface. Some common symptoms may include:

  • Constant shaking of hands or the entire body
  • Shaky voice or stammering
  • Extreme stress when facing people
  • Dry mouth
  • Nausea or dizziness
  • Heightened perspiration
  • Elevated blood pressure
  • Rubbing fingers or hands
  • Scratching the side of the nails
  • Reactive rather than responsive
  • Abrupt bursting out or going completely quiet

If you have such symptoms or know someone who has displayed these signs, you can help them or yourself by using the 6 best ways listed in this post.

So, what are the 6 ways to cope with public speaking anxiety?

➔   Acknowledging the Problem

One can never get to the bottom of something unless they acknowledge the fact that something is beyond ordinary. Getting to the core of the problem requires acknowledgment.

If you are not ready to accept that something is not right, you can never correct it. It is, therefore, essential that you realize the fact that you are dealing with social or public speaking anxiety.

Acknowledging an issue is a prerequisite to resolving a problem. Understand that it is acceptable to feel frightened when trying to make a speech in public. It makes it easy for you to find out how you can deal with it once you have accepted it the way it is.

You can only take further successful attempts towards resolving a matter as serious as public speaking anxiety when you acknowledge what you are facing. This may also be known as self-awareness. Everything starts to fall in place towards betterment and progress when a person recognizes what they are dealing with.

➔   Speak About Something That You Are Most Comfortable With

Your public speaking anxiety may be triggered by the choice of topic you make. You don't have to go with difficult ones or the much-hyped ones when making a speech. Therefore, it is better to go with something that you feel comfortable talking about.

Be wise and patient when making selections. Choose the one you can talk your heart out for. In case you have not been given a choice in making a speech, then you can always request a change in the topic.

Remember that giving up is not an option at all. If you are unable to choose a topic of your choice and your anxiety has already been triggered, then don't lose your calm. There are other ways you can use to cope with glossophobia.

➔   Know Your Audience

It's alright if you have to make a choice that wasn't your choice. You are still backed up with ways to cope up with public speaking anxiety. One of such ways includes knowing your audience.

Survey to find out who will be your listeners. When you know who your audience is going to be, it helps you to set an appropriate tone for your speech.

When you know who you have to be delivering the speech, it reduces your anxiety to a much greater extent. While also enabling you to pick the right tone, knowing your audience develops a sense of comfort when making a speech.

➔   Be Well Rehearsed

Being well-rehearsed allows you to know your moves. We tend to fear something that's not known to us. To avoid this fear of the unknown, being well-rehearsed is the best way to beat anxiety.

Related: 5 ways working out helps anxiety symptoms

When you are adequately prepared, you tend to feel a sense of comfort. This helps to reduce anxiety and eliminate any trigger that may have arisen due to lack of preparation.

Try practicing in front of a mirror. You may blush or laugh watching your reflection, but this does wonders to make you feel comfortable when making a speech.

➔   Tune Your Sleeping Patterns

Being overly stressed can cause irregular sleep patterns. For example, one of the significant triggers of public speaking anxiety is irregular sleep patterns.

Ensure that you take proper sleep. A tired mind can take you nowhere. So rather than spoiling your big day due to lack of sleep, it's better to get adequate rest before the day of speech and during the preparation period.

If you have trouble falling asleep, then drink milk before going to bed. Warm milk helps you fall asleep faster. Another way to fall asleep faster is that you can listen to ‘sleep’ music.

➔   Explore The Platform Before the Speech

The primary cause of glossophobia is the stage. You are standing on an elevated platform with a room full of people to face. Who wouldn't get anxious at such a sight?

The best way to deal with it is to explore the stage before the main event takes place. If possible, then rehearse on the same platform twice or thrice. This will reduce your stage fear, hence eliminating public speaking anxiety.

You are highly unlikely to stammer or feel anxious when you make a speech on the platform that you've already explored. A well-rehearsed address on a platform that you've grown slightly used to is unlikely to let anxiety surface.

Fear of Public Speaking Tips

Public speaking anxiety or glossophobia is quite common. Nearly everybody tends to go through a phase where they feel anxious upon facing a large group of people. Public speaking anxiety is a fear that can be overcome easily if you acknowledge it and be patient while dealing with it.

Know that not everyone possesses the talent of speaking in front of the people with words of wisdom that leave a trace on the hearts of the listeners. If you are someone that does possess this knack, then don't let yourself fall prey to glossophobia. Knowing what career you will choose makes a huge difference too. 

Be the best version of yourself the next time you step on the stage to make a speech. No matter how crowded the room is, remember that they are there to listen while you have the ultimate power, the power of words! Trust yourself and eradicate glossophobia with the help of the above-mentioned tips.