how to get over fear of public speaking

3 Ways To Get Over Fear Of Public Speaking

Maria Pellicano Business Voice Coach, confident speaking, public speaking, voice

Do you experience fear of public speaking? If so, have you ever been told that fear is just in your mind? Or that you should just get over it? Well it’s not that easy and I totally understand why you feel scared or nervous when you are faced with speaking in public.

In fact, 74% of people fear public speaking.  It the biggest fear that people face.  Even higher than death, which is 68%.   

Fear of public speaking is known as Glossophobia. “Glossa-” comes from a Greek word that means language, tongue, or speech.

Our voices are emotional and we hear this when someone is speaking and is feeling deeply emotional. Vocal cords vary in quality and thickness with cortisol changes in our bodies.

Your breath goes right out of order and you become light headed because you are simply not breathing well. Your breathing is shallow when you are nervous. Your body will relax when you breathe deeply.

Business Voice Coaching Tip 1: Breathe

Breathe deep, don’t lift your shoulders, direct the airflow to your belly. There are lots of benefits of breathing from your diaphragm. Listen to this audio and see what happens when you breathe properly. Put your hand on your stomach and push it out with your inhaled breath. Click Here to listen to an example.

“The only reason to master this technique is to be sure the body does not interfere with the soul’s free expression.”La Meri

Does your voice just shake and quiver?

It’s like you voice is going to quiver and fade out and taking breaths that would usually be easy and effortless suddenly become not enough.

The reason is that you vocal cords are totally responding to how you emotionally feel. Your voice is wobbling and not steady and this results in creating an uncertain perception about what you are saying and therefore a lack of trust from your audiences. The perception of the authority in your subject is diluted and now your listeners are very likely to be disengaged.

The Limbic Nerve Pathway System travels from the brain to the larynx, is activated by emotions and the environment, regulates breathing and heart rate, and has a strong grip on the larynx (voice).

Sometimes it’s called the flight or fight system. It produces cries, grunts, shouts, squeals, moans, laughter. Primal sound making is governed by the limbic system. It’ a powerful system. A great book to read further on this topic is written by  Ingo R. Titzo Fascinations with The Human Voice

Whether your fear or anxiety is “real” or not, it is experienced in the mind and therefore actually stops the larynx from working comfortably so the voice starts to shake and tremble.

Business Voice Coaching Tip 2: Take Control

The way you use your vocal cords will affect the way you speak. You can have a free resonating voice or you can have a restricted fatigued voice that will ultimately limit the longevity of your voice. Check out this video on how you can control your vocal cords.

When you are nervous your throat becomes tight and your voice tonality is restricted and tense. This can create vocal strain and pain. Over time the longevity of your voice is effected and you experience more and more fatigue.

Business Voice Coaching Tip 3: Relax

Remove the tension in your throat by making your voice dopey. What this sounds like is Yogi Bear. Make your voice sound hollow and deeper. When you do this your larynx drops slightly and there is more space in your throat. You can over-do it and then your voice will not sound very natural but a little helps to remove the squeeze feeling in your throat. Click here for an exercise you can do to help with this.

You can contact me for a complimentary half hour chat about how I can help you build you vocal strength so that when you are speaking in public you can be at ease because you can control your voice even if you are feeling challenged.

Your voice does not have to reveal your nervousness.  When you know how to implement these three tips your voice can help you feel confident, powerful and create more trust with your audiences. Click here to book your half hour complimentary session. 

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