How do you manage your fear while speaking in a large crowd?

Many people asked the same question and I think they will also appreciate an easy and straight answer. Unfortunately, I have no easy and straight answer.

I do not manage my fear while speaking in a large crowd. I am nervous but I do not fear anymore. It is normal to be nervous. But fear is something that we have learned… and something that we can unlearn.

My formal education taught me that speaking is a performance. The first goal is to satisfy my teachers so that I will get good grades. The second goal is to avoid making mistakes so that my classmates will not laugh at me.

I read books about speaking. Reading helped because I get to speak with the knowledge I am following the tips and techniques experts said worked for them. Yes, public speaking books made me a better speaker. But they did not cure my fear.

Why I do not fear anymore?

I cannot give you a formula or steps, but I have learned how to speak with confidence through public speaking. What I discovered is not how to manage fear, but how to gain confidence. I learned to be confident through speaking experiences.

Okay, let us go straight. Here are three ways you can gain more confidence.

1. Name your fear. We created most of our fears and we can destroy them because most of them are baseless. I know that they are very real, very true for someone who fear something. So, name your fears and banish them.

Do you fear making mistakes? The best and the brightest in this world make mistakes too. And they make bigger mistakes which cause an airplane to crush, a ship to sink, and for a country to be devastated by war. What are your mistakes compared to the mistakes made by the greatest among us. Speaking mistakes will not kill you or anyone.

Are you afraid to fail? To fail is to learn. Well, not for everyone. But you can choose to learn. Think of every speaking opportunity as a rehearsal to the next.

Do you think that do not have important things to say? Everyone has a story which may enrich a specific audience.

The first step to conquering your fear is by naming it. Most often the 800 pound gorilla is nothing but an illusion.

2. Name your dreams. You only need to get a dream bigger than your fear. I do not dream to become the greatest public speaker, but that dream is okay if that is your dream. I want to inspire people to do their best. I want to help the youth get good education. I want to travel around the world. I have more than enough dreams for me to think about my fears. I see public speaking as an instrument, a bridge, a tool, for me to achieve my dreams.

3. Love your audience. More than having dreams, I love my audience. I see public speaking as an opportunity to change someone’s life. Why fear public speaking when it can help me connect with my audience? My audience is not an enemy. Fear has no place when your dreams and your love for your audience occupies your coliseum.

I share many techniques when I conduct Show Up and Speak workshops. But these techniques are best done with a mentor, or someone who can give you instant feedback. Also, techniques can only be of help when you use them in the context of freeing yourself.

Author's Bio: 

Jef Menguin is a professional speaker based in the Philippines. He conducts seminars and workshops on leadership and communication.

To learn more about him, visit today.