Do you know that public speaking is one of the most common fear shared by grown adults? Surprisingly, a lot of people believe that speaking in front of a large group of people is worse than losing financial security. The main reason lies deep within us as humans, the fear of making a mistake has been one of the main factors as to why most people struggle with stage fright. We talked about stage fright in our previous blog here but there are still some more points to explain in this one!
The fear of public speaking or public performance, often called stage fright, exacts a huge effect on self-confidence which causes some people to leave school or a job or even avoid a promotion. Because of this fear, a lot have missed out on amazing opportunities to better themselves in school or workplace, which might not be a problem for some people, but for aspiring individuals, might crush them. Many, including professional speakers, suffer in silent terror of standing in front of the podium to speak out to the world. And because they feel embarrassed, people try to keep their fear a secret, even from a spouse or other close family members or friends.
Most of us feel a degree of nervousness when preparing to speak up or perform in front of a group. It is important to take note that some of those who are filled with panic in such a situation, or anywhere the person might be centre of attention, may be suffering from a form of social anxiety disorder. Although feeling scared to speak up in front a crowd of other people seemed common to the public, it will undoubtedly ruin the credibility of your speech.
Learning to improve your speaking or performance skills is good, but it’s generally not enough to effectively dissolve your fear. You must evaluate and revise any negative perceptions, beliefs, thoughts, images, and predictions you have that are related to public speaking. Learning to accept yourself and not feeling that you must prove yourself to others is at the root of healing. Therefore, it’s often helpful to uncover the deeper fears related to being seen and heard by others, showing vulnerability, and being considered less than perfect.
It’s also critical to learn cognitive-behavioural methods to stop the cycle of avoiding fearful situations. Avoidance may give you immediate relief, but it reinforces your fear in the long run. If you are willing to stop avoiding your fears and learn new skills to manage them, you will develop an empowering belief and trust in yourself. Upon finding ways to cope with your fear and enhance your speaking skills, you will ultimately find a new sense of confidence in yourself.
The newly found confidence will be the drive for you to keep going, achieving new milestones, and challenging yourself to a higher level each day. This is great because as you keep ascending, you will only drive yourself forward and eventually get over the fear. In facing your fear, it becomes possible to overcome performance anxiety and find comfort and ease in expressing yourself in front of others.
So, what are you waiting for? Challenge yourself today and get on that stage!