How to Quit Being Shy in front of an Audience

Presenting, public speaking, participating in discussions, and stating one’s own opinion is harder for some people than for others. I never had a problem to present my ideas in front of an audience. Public speaking has never been a problem for me. Many other people are desperately afraid to do all these things. While they might have a strong opinion about something they are not able to express it. They are tremendously intelligent but they cannot present their amazing ideas to team members, work associates, their boss or professor.

With this short post, I want to give you some of my personal advice on how you may present your ideas with more confidence in front of an audience.

Self Awareness is the Key

You have to start with self-awareness. I think that self-awareness is probably the most important skill or ability in life. You have to know yourself 100%. You need to know your feelings, your emotions, your skills, and your expertise. Being self-aware also means knowing and acknowledging your own weaknesses and bad behaviors. If you master self-awareness it will become a lot easier for you to master every single presentation or public speaking engagement.
You know that you are the expert on the topic you are about to present where is the reason to be shy? If are aware of your own feelings, emotions, and skills you will also start to stop caring about what other people think about you. Your nervousness will decrease tremendously if you don’t care what other people think about you.

Reduce your Nervousness with this Trick

I have a little trick for you if it is hard for you to stop thinking about what others people might think about you. When I was in 5th or 6th grade my mother heard of an advice which decreases your nervousness in front of an audience. Here is what you need to do to decrease your nervousness immediately.

When you stand in front of an audience and you feel nervous take a deep breath. Now imagine you are standing in front of a kindergarten class full of 4-year-old kids. This will decrease your nervousness as we all know that kids never judge people. Another correlated trick is to imagine your whole audience naked. Do you see the fat guy with his arrogant glance in his ugly suit? If he is the reason why you are nervous start imagining him naked. Now you see a room full of naked people who want to listen to your presentation. What an awkward situation. This situation is so awkward that it becomes funny. You will start smiling and this is where the magic begins.

Now you might say that it is not possible for you to imagine 4-year-old kids or a naked audience. I am here to tell you that this technique also works on a more basic level. Become aware of your situation. If you are a student and you have to present in front of fellow students think about your situation for a second. You are presenting in front of other students who are in the same situation as you are. You don’t hold a TED Talk about astrophysics in front of 4 Noble price winners. Bill Gates, Justin Bieber, and your biggest idol are all not sitting in the audience. Just 50 random fellow students.

In the Long-Term: Raise your EQ

While this small trick might work in the short-term, I recommend you to improve your emotional skills. The EQ consists of several aspects, self-awareness is probably the most important one of all. You really need to understand your strengths and weaknesses, your feelings and bad habits. Start defending your own position and train your flexibility. Being an optimist and to think positive is also a big part of the equation.

Even if this might seem like a lot of work for you, improving your EQ is definitely worth it. The highest IQ is worthless if you cannot express your ideas, skills, and knowledge.

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