Overcoming Presentation Anxiety
In the weeks before your presentation...
- Inquire about the room set up and equipment. Podium? Microphone?
- Practice, practice, practice on your own. Try in front of a mirror.
- Practice before a mock audience of family and friends.
- Video record a practice session. Critique your voice, eye contact & gestures.
- Know your material thoroughly as this will build your confidence.
- Anticipate questions & how to respond.
- Create a simple outline on one note card (acts as a "security blanket.")
- Practice your opening lines over & over again until you don't stumble. You want to start strong!
At least an hour before your presentation…
- Drink water & remain hydrated.
- Take a short stroll with relaxed arms. Breathe in deeply & exhale.
- Double check room set up. Test the equipment.
- Close your eyes. Imagine yourself in front of the audience, addressing both sides of the room.
- Rehearse your opening lines. Do it again.
About 20 minutes before you present…
- Secure help to distribute handouts.
- Touch base with moderator/timekeeper.
- Go to the rest room. Stretch out your arms. Gently roll shoulders.
- Refocus eyes out window/across room. Breathe in deeply & exhale.
- Take another sip of water.
As you walk to the podium...
- Remind yourself: I know my material!
- Breathe in deeply & exhale.
- Have eye contact with audience. Smile.
List developed by Robin G Walker, PhD.