DISCUSS: Managing Nerves

People surveyed year after year indicate that one of their greatest fears in life is public speaking. I have a feeling our WRITERS in the class can really relate to this feeling.  But, fear of “failing” or being embarrassed in front of an audience doesn’t just impact speakers.  I’m guessing we have  athletes, musicians, dancers, in the course who have experienced nerves before a key game or show. Using notes from reading, share tips for what helps people manage normal feelings of nerves effectively.  You are also invited to call out “lame” tips.  For example, I hear all the time that nervous speakers could focus on a sweet/safe spot in the back of the room when speaking so they do not have to look at audience members and feel nervous.  This is lame and not effective because it is weird.  Can you imagine if I taught a class staring at a back wall for 50 minutes and was too scared to  acknowledge the existence of my students sitting in front of me.  Not a good tip!

A more effective tip would be to “scan” the audience to make generalized eye contact. Your turn!  What tips were offered in reading that you find personally useful or did any of the reading tips strike you as lame?