Three Tips for Trainers to Overcome Anxiety about Public Speaking
By Etsuko Ogiso, Business Consultants, Inc.
Trainers work with groups of people to teach them new skills and develop new abilities and attitudes. This often involves giving training presentations for both large and small groups. One thing that almost any trainer will have to deal with is anxiety about public speaking. This is perfectly natural and not unusual. Every new trainer has to overcome this anxiety. Here are three tips to help in overcoming anxiety while training others.
The first tip is for the trainer to admit that they are anxious. Ignoring the feeling will not help. Instead, it might cause the trainer to freeze right as they approach the podium. These feelings may keep the trainer awake at night or cause loss of appetite. This is not healthy and the trainer needs strategies for preventing these feelings from taking over. There is always a strong temptation to deny the problem. No one wants to admit that an important part of a job is causing feelings of anxiety. If left unchecked, these feelings can fester and cause the trainer serious problems. The anxiety will only grow in the future if no coping strategies are put in place. The best thing is to confront the issue straight on and deal with it. By admitting these powerful feelings exist, the trainer can then develop strategies to address them. This will build confidence for all future public speaking. It will help to restore a calm and peaceful mental attitude to the trainer’s life.
Once the trainer admits that this is an issue that needs to be addressed, there are a number of strategies that can help. The first is to believe in their self and build self-confidence. The trainer needs to constantly remind themself that they have something valuable to contribute. By training others, they are helping them develop valuable skills that will enhance their lives. They also need to remind themself that their audience is interested in what they have to offer. They are coming to the training because they want to develop new skills. The trainer should remind themself of this fact often, especially when strong feelings of anxiety are present. The feelings will pass but the fact that the trainer has valuable information to present will not. This belief creates the self-confidence to move forward and dispels anxiety. It allows the speaker to stay calm. This is an important key to successful public speaking.
Another strategy for overcoming anxiety is to visualize success. The trainer should take some quiet time and imagine themself at the event giving their presentation. They should imagine how well the event is going and how much their audience is absorbing from their training. By imagining a successful end result, the trainer creates positive feelings that will dispel the anxiety. This kind of visualization is a technique that is used by many types of people. Salespeople imagine successfully closing deals. Athletes visualize themselves performing well. And public speakers imagine themselves giving stellar presentations. By visualizing a successful result, the person helps to create the conditions and confidence to bring about that result.
Giving in to feelings of fear, nervousness and anxiety doesn’t do anyone any good. It makes the trainer miserable and it prevents them from effectively delivering the content that their audience is seeking. By using these strategies to build self-confidence, the trainer can dispel these feelings and create a calm mental state that will allow them to effectively deliver the training. These tips are a great start to building self-confidence at public-speaking. There are also many other strategies that successful trainers use to stay calm and dispel anxiety.