Change your attitude towards your presentation nerves and they will lose control over you ……
Often people that I coach write in their intake form that they would like to “fight” , “to eliminate” or “combat” their presentation nerves.
Their use of the verbs “fight”, “eliminate”, “combat” sounds like true war language!
Unfortunately, this war attitude is not going to help you in the nerves department.
If you see your nerves as a problem, that needs to be eliminated and needs to be fought against, then your body is going to react to that!
Your body is going to get your cortisol levels up, it is going to get ready and prepped “for war”.
This can literally translate itself during the presentation in the presenters literal attitude: clenched fists, restless scanning over the audience, talking fast, no breaks in between (because that could show weakness). The audience is the enemy that is out there to get you.
In a nutshell, by having this fighting attitude, you paradoxically put a whole lot of oil on the “nerves” fire instead of trying to lessen it.
If this “fighting” is not the right attitude that is going to help you with nerves, what is?
In order to explain this well, we funnily enough can have a look at the literal attitude that you could have as a presenter, to give you more insight into this.
The right attitude is NOT:
Leaning forward and fighting! Boxing your way through it.
Nor is it freezing up, locking yourself (becoming lifeless) losing connection with yourself (hardly breathing) and the audience (looking at the audience as a deer that looks into the lamps of an approaching car).
Nor is it moving away. Fleeing. The extreme is avoiding presentations altogether during your whole career.
So, what is the right attitude?
It is remaining in the middle, remaining connected to yourself (keep breathing) remaining connected to the audience (being present, being available). An open sort of balance.
Will this “open sort of balance” mean your nerves will disappear?
No, they will not disappear altogether, nor do they need to. With this attitude, you do not get overexcited about presentation nerves. You realize they are part of the deal. You know they help you to remain alert and give you that “fun” exciting feeling.
In a nutshell, this attitude is about accepting nerves. Remaining connected and remaining present while you speak. Realizing there is nothing to fix or solve about this excitement while you speak. It is ok, you can sink and grow roots in the floor while you speak, metaphorically speaking (There is no need for fighting, freezing or fleeing).
And when you dare to be ok with these nerves and remain open, present and connected while presenting, then they will slowly but surely lose their stronghold over you. They will have to pack their bags and find a lesser hero or heroine to cling to…..
Do you want to learn how to do this?
Then apply for one-to-one coaching “Presenting on Sneakers” where you will learn how to present with more grip, impact and pleasure.
Want to know more? Mail to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Or look at the footage.