My hands start shivering while presenting myself

Postby naveen.daffodildb » Wed Jul 09, 2014 7:13 am

Hi Guys

I am working in IT field from more than 3 years. FIrstly I tried to avoid the any type of presentation.If I have do give some presentation then my body starts shivering my heart beat starts beating at rapid speed and this makes me uncomfortable and this happens several times with me.
Please guide me how can avoid this.
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Postby Richard@DecisionSkills » Wed Jul 09, 2014 3:31 pm

Did you know public speaking is feared more than death itself? Or it is second next to death. Anyway, the fear of public speaking is way up there on the list of fears so don't beat yourself up. I still get nervous when I speak in public and I rely on it to make a fact if you look at my LinkedIn profile the second thing I am endorsed for most is public speaking.

Anyway, there are several things you can do, but in the end it all boils down to being prepared and then practice, practice, practice. The more you practice the more confident you become and the more confident you become the less fear you will experience. For me, once I have given a new presentation once, the second time it is a breeze.

And there are simply tons of tricks. For instance, do you use power point? How do you position yourself in front of your audience? How much time do you have to prepare for each speech? Do you mingle with the audience before hand and connect with one or two people you can use for "eye contact", do you look over the audience? What kind of lighting is available? Do you have a plant in the audience that can ask a question?

Anyway, to help "guide you", can you tell us a bit more about the kinds of presentations you typically end up doing, the topic, length, audience, etc.?
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Postby naveen.daffodildb » Thu Jul 10, 2014 4:49 am

Thanks Richard
--For instance, do you use power point?
>>Yes I use powerpoint
--How do you position yourself in front of your audience?
>>Feels fear.One thing goes in mind what will happen when my turn will come ?
--How much time do you have to prepare for each speech?
>>Approximately 1 hour
--Do you mingle with the audience before hand and connect with one or two people you can use for "eye contact", do you look over the audience?
>>I never did eye contact with the audience
--What kind of lighting is available?
>>usually with projector.
--Do you have a plant in the audience that can ask a question?
>>I never asked this because I don't want to stay at that position for more time because something can happen if they --will ask any question for me and and I did not know about it.
--can you tell us a bit more about the kinds of presentations you typically end up doing, the topic, length, audience, etc.?
>>Yes usually on technology as I am IT trainer and presentations are usually of 25 - 30 minutes
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Postby Alexander Ang » Thu Jul 10, 2014 6:28 am

Hi Naveen,

I guess 95% of the world population also having the same fear when comes to public speaking. So it is absolutely fine with it. Even the great speakers, they have this "before stage" fear, nervousness where all the adrenalines kicks in.

Perhaps what you need to do is to have "before stage" ritual. Meaning do something that will excite you, that will prepare yourself, looking to share with your audience feeling rituals before you talk in front of a group of people.

You need to MENTALLY PREPARE YOURSELF before go up on the stage. That way you will makes your presentation naturally smoother. (Of course keep practising your presentation, learning skills and techniques to engage your participants is also a must to helps you making your presentation greater).

Plan and think about what are the action steps you could take to mentally prepare yourself before you go on stage?
Some examples are:

1) Rubbing your hands & walk around, shout "YES" "YES" YES" 10-15 mins before you go on stage
2) Rehearse your presentation over and over again until you know what to talk about even though you are not thinking.
3) Jump around, creating positive energy, and immerse yourself, imagine yourself like a professional speakers, how do they feel? What is their posture like? What is their energy level etc.. :idea:

Hopes this helps a little. :)

Cheers! :idea:
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Postby SelfHelpTrends » Thu Jul 10, 2014 1:50 pm

Hi Naveen,

I was in the same situation as you when I had to do a presentation in the school hall where there are a few hundred students. I remember when I was holding on to a piece of paper and rehearsing what I had to talk in front of the audience in my class.

My hand started shaking along with the paper and I remembered that my classmates started laughing at me like crazy. I was totally embarrassed but I said to myself that I can do this.

On the actual day of the presentation, I actually pulled off the presentation very well. In fact, my teacher even said that I did a great job. I was totally calm and did not use the paper to remember my points at all.

Here are tips that really helped me a lot:

1. Practice what I had to say in front of the mirror several times until I feel comfortable with how I looked.

2. Before the presentation, I kept telling myself that I can do it. This actually helped me to stay calm instead of being anxious.

3. Use 3 x 5 cards to summarize key pointers and put it in your hand for reference in case you forget anything.

4. Drink a glass of water to sooth your throat so that you can project your voice confidently.

5. Visualizing my presentation in my mind on the night before the actual presentation also helped me a lot.

For more useful tips, you can check out Toastmasters International.

All the best!
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Postby Richard@DecisionSkills » Thu Jul 10, 2014 2:36 pm

Naveen, there is plenty of good material to work with here. There are a few things where we don't understand each other but no big deal. Currently what I see you doing as an IT trainer is training employees on topics such as how to use the company Intranet or email, going over policy, etc. I see you standing at the front of a class of between 15 to 30 people that are all sitting behind computers. You teach the same topics repeatedly. Am I way off? If I am horribly wrong just tell me.

Another question. What is your biggest fear? That you won't know the answer to a question, that someone will laugh?

Here are some recommendations for you personally. For anyone else that happens to stop by this thread, these recommendations are for people not comfortable with public speaking, not public speaking in general.

-1- You need to practice, preferably in the exact room where you provide the training if possible. Go through a few dry runs. If you are using power point, work on not reading directly from the power point. You should only have a few bullet points or 1-2 graphics per slide. If you can make a slide transition every 30 seconds the audience will focus on the screen. Ideally, ask one or two friends or close co-workers to help provide feedback.

-2- Set the room up to improve your level of comfort. This is why I asked about your position and lighting. If you can get behind a lectern/podium, have the students 10' back instead of right up on you and dim the lights over the podium with most of the light focused on the power point screen then for a novice speaker it should help. The students will naturally be looking at the screen. If you can't, you have to work with what you have.

-3- Have a blue tooth remote with laser pointer to advance the slides. You can use this tool to allow you to move around as you like and point out things on the screen, once again focusing the students attention where you want.

-4- Always have a bottle of water and some tissue nearby in case you need to sneeze or you want to take a quick pause for a dry throat or if you momentarily lost your train of thought.

-5- Prepare some (5 or so) 3x5 notecards with pre-made questions you know the answer to and you believe the students need to know or would like to know.

-6- Always arrive early to get things set up. Put out a sign up sheet. Set out 3x5 note cards with a piece of candy and a pen. The candy is based on the psychological theory of reciprocity. Students basically owe you so they will be more likely to perceive your presentation in a favorably. I'm not making this up, it is science, lol.

-7- As students enter the room, take the time to greet a few of them. Make small talk, ask them where they are from, how long it took them to get there, why did they decide to take the class, whatever questions just to get the students talking and seeing you as a normal person.

-8- When it is time to start make sure to give a quick introduction of yourself, who you are and what the class is about. As you introduce yourself, have a slide with your contact info. Thank the students for participating up front.

-9- Tell the students if they can please hold their questions until the end of the presentation. Ask them to write down any questions they have on 3x5 cards. Tell them you will try to get to all the questions, but if for some reason there is not enough time or you don't address their question then to please see you after the class or email you. The entire point here is because you are not comfortable, you are eliminating the fear of random questions or being presented with a question you do not know by using 3x5 cards.

-10- Give your awesome presentation.

-11- If for some reason a person breaks rule -9- and does ask a question in the middle of the presentation, if you know the answer go ahead and respond and if you are not sure, never be afraid to simply say, "Good question, I don't know the answer but I will find out and get back with you."

-12- After your presentation ask the students to hand in their 3x5 cards. The vast majority will be blank, but that is why you have your pre-made cards. Cover all the questions on the 3x5 cards if you can. If you come across a card you don't know the answer, go ahead and read it out, say you don't know the answer and that you will find out and email anyone that wants to sign up.

-13- Over time you will collect questions from students and so you can throw away the pre made 3x5 cards and just always have some actual student questions from previous classes on hand.

-14- At the very end of the class, finish by once again putting up a slide with your contact information and then welcome any students that still have unanswered questions to come up and ask.

Granted all of these points may not work for you personally, but hopefully there are one or two things you can use.
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Postby rat123 » Thu Jul 10, 2014 2:51 pm

I know this if I hold a paper that I read from
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Postby naveen.daffodildb » Fri Jul 11, 2014 6:38 am

Thanks All for your valuable suggestions
I will use your point 9 as this seems very helpful to me.
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Postby Carl » Thu Oct 01, 2015 5:09 pm

Hi people,
I have wanted to do public speaking for a while, and a few opportunities have arised, unfortunately, so did my stomach (who can relate to this). Something I have noticed however, about public speaking is, as nervous as you might be, it makes a world of difference when you overstand the topic you are presenting. Another cool thing to do is to record yourself before the time of your speech. This is something i do, and i can honestly say, standing up i front of a mic is not as scary as an audience, BUT, you will learn how to take more control of your tongue, your pitch and your tone which makes a BIG difference if used correctly.You dont need a professional mic, most phones have this capability these days so as part of your preparation, record yourself, and listen back, and sometimes you can identify what is good and not so good about the speech. Its just like working out/exercising in front of a mirror, it is much easier to find imperfections and perfections in the mirror than without, consider a mic your mirror.

I am light years away from being an expert on the subject, however, I do have a little experience, and i thought I should share what has helped me as it might help you. Hope this helps :D

Any feedback, constructive criticism or comments are welcome. I am very warm and open.

Also let me know if the recording thing helps you become more aware of your powerful vocal instrument

Take care
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Postby Mephestic » Thu Oct 15, 2015 10:31 am

I for many years have struggled with the same but my job actually involves speaking to groups of 12 offenders pretty much daily. I was terrified of speaking in front of people I should say too but I threw myself in the deep end and overcame this. I still do get nervous about presenting in front of people such as work colleagues but can get through it now.

Some tips I have found which work:

- Beta blockers such as propranolol help calm you down and deal with the anxiety. They really helped me big time become use to public speaking

- Drinking water at the start after a few sentences is a good way to break the "fast talking" people fall into. It also buys you a couple seconds to breath.

- Breath - When you talk and your afraid you begin to breath shallow breaths really quickly which means you run out of air and your voice will break; Try go through your presentation sentence by sentence intentionally stopping at each sentence to breath - this is a good method to get calm at it.

- Know your materials; You will only struggle if you have no idea what you're talking about so just make sure you know your presentation well.
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Postby 1maori » Fri Feb 12, 2016 3:07 am

Just wanted to see how you were Progressing with Your Public Speaking?

I think that the advice on this forum is sound, a lot of it is what I would have said myself.

So I'll just add one more thing.

Make the Presentation ALL About Your Audience

You do that by isolating the most important objective that you want for your audience and you structure your entire presentation around it.

If you empathise and care for your Audience chances are you won't be afraid of them.

So do all the tings that you've been told to do thus far and add a level of care for your audience. Fear comes when the body reacts to the unknown possibilities of what could happen to you.

So if you make it about the audience, your mind will have no reason to fear and react.

This will take a while to master but caring for your audience, along with all the great techniques you have been taught here will help you eliminate your fear.
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