Improve Your Presentation Confidence
When I started presenting several years ago,
my lack of presentation confidence was one of the biggest barriers I had to overcome.
Even after I had delivered many presentations, I still
didn't feel I was a good presenter. And because I didn't feel I was
a good enough presenter, how could I ever improve my presentation
confidence? It was a vicious circle.
I read several books on the subject and tried
different presentation techniques, but somehow I couldn't get the
sparkle or enthusiasm into my presentations that I had seen other -
more confident - presenters deliver.
By chance one day, I was discussing this with
a colleague whom I had seen presenting on several occasions and I
knew was a very good and confident presenter. When presenting, he
would come into the room, roll up his sleeves and deliver a
presentation full of passion and conviction. He looked confident and
self-assured, and that confidence reflected in his presentations. He
has long since retired, but what he said that day has stayed with
me, and I've since discovered it is one of the most important
truisms in improving not only presentation confidence, but
confidence in general.
"Ian", he said "if you want to improve your
presentation confidence, you've got to look and act like a confident
presenter". All very well I thought, but how could I look and act
like a confident presenter until I felt like one? Again it was that
He went on to point out that, yes it is a
circle, the trouble with me was that I was in the negative version
of it. "Personal actions", he said "trigger personal feelings, just
as much as personal feelings trigger personal actions." Because I
didn't feel like a confident presenter, I didn't behave like one. Or
to put it another way, how you feel about a situation affects how
you behave, and conversely how you behave in a situation affects how you feel
This is best visualized in the diagram
actions/feeling closed loop
When personal feelings are lacking, there is
no better way to strengthen them than to behave as if they
were present. Let your actions be the driving force for your
feelings. So, for example, the best way not to feel nervous is to
behave as if you're not nervous. The best way to be happy is to act
like a happy person. And the best way to be a confident,
self-motivated presenter is to behave like one.
This may all sound a bit like double-speak, but
I've since discovered that this principle of self-change and
self-motivation is at the heart of positive thinking. Everyone is
either in a positive or negative version of this closed loop.
Because my presentation confidence was lacking, I was in a
negative version of this loop, which showed in my presentations. To
change to more positive thinking, our best entry point is at the
action stage where you can act how you want to be perceived, and let
your feelings follow.
to Fear of Public Speaking from Presentation
Copyright © 2008-2009 Presentation-Power-Tips.Com. All