Best Public Speaking Prep Practices

Best Public Speaking Prep Practices

Yeah! You're speaking tomorrow, and you've been looking forward to giving this presentation for a while now. Are you prepped  and psyched to take the stage? Did you know that getting prepped and psyched to take the stage was even a thing? It is, and that’s what this article is about: ways to prep and psyche yourself right into being your best version of "you."

So let's start with things you can do before you even leave your house. Things like making sure you're comfortable with everything you're wearing—including your shoes. That way you'll feel good about the way you look, and you won't have to worry about clothing malfunctions or having trouble walking because your shoes don't fit right.

Are you taking advantage of your drive time on your way to the event? This is time most people don't even think about. But it's usually time you have all to yourself... time that can be used for things like warming up your voice, visualizing your presentation going great from start to finish, or listening to music that either calms your nerves or psyches you up. If you think about it, you're already doing something during that drive time. Now it's just a matter of figuring how to use it to your best advantage.

Okay, time to move on to ideas and advice from a few first-class pros. We'll start with words of wisdom from TED Speaker Coach Gina Barrett. The link below this paragraph will take you to an article she wrote. The article might be on the conventional side, but it's still full of great tips for prepping yourself to take the stage.

A TED Speaker Coach Shares 11 Tips for Right Before You go on Stage

This next link provided below this paragraph is to a Ted Talk given by Amy Cuddy where she talks about the science of how to use body language to your advantage. What’s really interesting is that this same video has been retitled as a video about “power poses,” and a video about the idea “fake it till you make it.” That’s because it includes that content too. Amy backs up everything she says with science though. It’s 20 minutes long, but wow... definitely worth every speaker’s time.

Your Body Language Shapes Who You Are by Amy Cuddy

And this last link below this paragraph is to an out-of-the-box strategy for dealing with the nerves, fear, and butterflies that won't go away, etc. that speakers often experience before taking the stage. It combines meditation and EFT—Emotional Freedom Technique, aka “tapping.” If you haven’t heard of tapping before, it’s another science-based technique people can use to overcome a variety of problems. This link will take you to Nick Ortner’s website where he offers a meditation/tapping audio on "Releasing the Fear of Public Speaking." What I like about this webpage is that you can download the audio for free. There's also a link on the page you can click on to learn more about how EFT works.

Tapping Meditation: Releasing the Fear of Public Speaking

Phew... I’ve done my part. I’ve provided a collection of great tips, techniques, and strategies you can use to better prepare yourself for your presentations—including easy and actionable ways to deal with any pesky nerves or fears you might be experiencing. Now it’s up to you. Or, as we say in tennis… the ball is in your court.