Don’t apologize or draw attention to your nerves onstage.

You’re in the middle of a speech, and you suddenly feel nervous, you feel yourself going blank or you feel the sweat starting to build on your forehead.

At this moment, you feel an incredibly strong urge to apologize to the audience. You want to confess that you feel nervous, that you’re doubting yourself or you’re not certain what you are saying.

Believe me, this is the last thing the audience wants to hear.

And it’s the last thing you need to tell them.

Remember: you never look or sound as nervous as you feel.

As a rule, the audience will likely feel or sense about half your level of anxiety. 

By keeping your nervous feelings covert and keeping moving with your speech, you will find that soon the nerves will settle and you will get back on track.

Here’s something important to remember: the audience wants you to succeed. They don’t want you to make a fool of yourself so they can point at you and laugh. They want you to feel confident and deliver a great message. That’s why they are listening to you.

Gather strength from their belief in you. Use their confidence in you to get through the nerves and deliver the best you can.

If you are a beginner speaker, the chances are the nerves will stay with you for a while. It’s okay, it’s part of learning to speak in front of an audience.

 Know that the audience is on your side and trusts in you. This makes the nerves start to fade after a while.

The urge to explain your nervous condition will only make the audience feel uncomfortable. Trust that you will get through it, and deliver the best you can.

Daniel Midson-Short

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