Stage Fright - Points to Get Over It
Communication is an essential part of our life as human beings. We cannot do away with it. Like the famous line that goes: No man is an Island, we need to get in touch with others for social development. The fear, however, to speak in front of a crowd is a common difficulty one has to overcome. The five tips below are what I personally used as an individual to overcome stage fright as a student.
1. Communicate With Your Peers More Often
While it is true that some of us are introverts, the truth is we have friends of our own whom we can be who we are without reservations. Being with these types of friends is a boon in one's life because you can open up without the fear of being judged. Take this as an opportunity to develop your confidence in communicating with others. Try to discuss with them things that you love or hate. Talk about your homeworks if they happen to be your classmates or tasks that you have in common so that you are at the same ground. Do this more often.
2. Start with Small Groups
During group tasks in classes, do not be afraid to share your ideas with your group mates. If you have nothing to share, try asking them about the task. Try offering help in the planning and preparation phase so that you are not being left behind. If these do not work because of the type of group you have, try asking help from your teacher to place you to a group that you are comfortable to work with. If you are afraid to be a presenter of the group in front of the class, try presenting how you are going to do it just in your group. If you are pushed to be a presenter in front of the class, grab the opportunity to have the experience. The fear to present before a crowd is normal but the chance to have the experience to overcome such fear even in a small group is a very big start.
3. Join Organizations
Schools have different clubs or organizations for students. Try being a member or an officer in these clubs. Doing so will help you meet different types of people and you will learn how to deal with different personalities under different perspectives. These organizations hold meetings where you can observe how they present themselves and how they deal with a crowd. In some cases, you will be asked to be a speaker in the organizational level. Take the challenge and do not worry of prejudices. Many of the people in one organization support each other so you don't have to worry that much.
4. Master Your Speech or Piece
Some people tremble in front of a group of people because they are worried to commit mistake. Committing an error in public usually causes trauma and phobia. In few cases, this becomes the point where people start to hate being in front of a crowd. This, however, can be countered. If you think that you are not that familiar yet with your speech, try practicing it many times. You can practice with your friend and ask his/her feedback about it. If you are not ready to have your speech heard by anyone, practice in front of a mirror. This way you can listen to your own speech while you see your own expression as you deliver it. You can also practice with your favorite pets like dogs, cats, rabbits, birds, or any animal friend that you have. They will not be able to give you feedback but you will get the hang of speaking confidently. You may also roll your shoulders, take a deep breath, blubber words, or sing a song to ease your nerves. Going to a calming place like mountains, fields, garden, and the like will help you think more and practice more.
5. Avoid Getting Distracted and Be Confident
Being distracted while on a speech or presentation can make get you off-track. You might find a hard time getting back to your topic if the distraction is in front of you. Most of the times, what gets you distracted is one of your audience. You might see someone from your spectator who appears to be laughing, smirking, or any other negative expression. To avoid being distracted, just look at your audience once in a while and do not focus in one direction. Also, always be confident in front and show necessary expressions to convey your point. Your audience doesn't know what you are going to say next so stay confident. Realize that what you are afraid of is your own judgment. So, promise yourself to be your own best friend. Put in mind that what and how you see yourself will build a strong foundation of becoming a better person.
The tips above are deemed useful in my personal experiences as a student. I used to be an introvert and is very much afraid to speak in front to avoid being judged. During recitations, I usually whisper the answer to my seatmate and he answers it before the class. I used those tips to overcome stage fright since my teachers pushed me to be more. If you are no longer a student and is still going through a stage fright, you can still follow those tips. It's just that the context changes but the content is still there.
© 2020 Jimmy Bio Jr