How to Handle Pre-Presentation Jitters

by Dr. Rick Goodman on August 6, 2018

Studies show us time and time again that public speaking is one of the things people fear the most. Even those who give presentations on a regular basis can experience “butterflies” at the thought of getting up in front of an audience—and that can significantly erode your sense of confidence and self-assurance.

The good news is that there are some steps you can take to get rid of those butterflies and tame your pre-presentation jitters. Allow me to explain.

Know Your Stuff

This one is a no-brainer, yet it needs to be said: The single best thing you can do to calm your nerves is to prepare. Know your subject inside and out, but also have a clear sense of the two or three main points you need to hit—just in case time fails you. I also recommend rehearsing your opening minute or two before you get on stage, ensuring you can start smoothly.

Know Your Audience

Whenever possible, take some time to analyze the makeup of your audience. Ask yourself what kind of value they’re looking for, then make sure you’re offering it to them in your presentation. You’ll feel better about your talk when you know that you’re saying something people are eager to hear.

Know Your Cues

Make sure your content is well-organized—and insert key phrases in your prepared materials, prompting you to move into the next section. If you’re using slides, you might even build some of these key phrases into your transitions. The important thing is to very discreetly leave yourself a road map to follow, being careful that you never veer too far off course.

Practice Your Material

I know some sales pros who have given the exact same presentation or pitch 100 times or more—and they still practice each and every time. Why? Because you always want to have the utmost familiarity with your material. Giving a presentation “cold” is a recipe for big-time butterflies!

There are other things you can do to remain calm, and I’ve written about them elsewhere—but these are the big ones. Follow these steps to go into each presentation as cool, calm, and collected as you can be!

Reach out to ask me more about the best presentation tips. I’m always here to coach you through them. Contact me today by calling my number or hitting up my website: Connect at www.rickgoodman.com or 888-267-6098.

Dr. Rick GoodmanHow to Handle Pre-Presentation Jitters

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