Nervous before Your Presentation

Relax, It’s Perfectly Normal to be Nervous before Your Presentation

Giving a presentation is the most nerve-wracking task some people could be assigned. The worst advice to give them is “Don’t be nervous.”

Don’t be nervous. Relax

Easy for others to say, right? They’re not the ones with the big presentation ahead of them. Plus, it’s terrible advice for several reasons. First, it’s useless. If you could just turn off the nervousness, you would, right? Second, what’s wrong with being nervous?

Being nervous is a good thing. It shows that what you are about to do, is important to you. Nervousness shows that you care and are conscientious.

Understand your nervousness. Maybe you are afraid of public speaking. Maybe you are worried about making a fool of yourself. Maybe you are worried everyone will see the perspiration dripping from your forehead. Name them, admit that they are there – then don’t forget: the reasons behind the nerves aren’t important. Not letting them interfere with your success is.

How about looking at the situation from another angle?

Content is King.

You are speaking to provide information to your audience, so try to focus on conveying your message in a way that makes your audience get it.

Here’s how:

Point #1. The information in the presentation is the takeaway for the audience. Not your performance..

Point #2. Nervousness = Excitement. Wouldn’t you rather give an energetic presentation than a blasé one?

Point #3. You care about your audience. Nerves are a sign you want to deliver the best to them.

Remember, no one expects perfection. They expect your best effort. If you make a mistake, rectify it and continue. The audience wants to learn from you, and they want you to succeed. (By the way, stumbling over a word, miscues on a prezi stop, forgetting to say “good morning and welcome,” those types of things aren’t considered mistakes. Go easy on yourself.)

So, embrace those butterflies in your stomach, listen to that elevated heart rate, and mop your brow. Your nerves are your friends. Tell them “thank you” for helping you with presentation.

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