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  • Speaking in front of an audience

    Hi Auntie Lynne, Yoohoo!

    Maybe you can give me some encouragement.

    First of all, congradulations for running the race for Govenor!

    I'm very happy and proud of you.

    My husband is a Minister and I'm like the firstlady of our church.
    Okay, sometimes on some Sundays, we have second services at our sister churches. Before my husband preaches, I have to go up and introduce him to the other church members. I give a brief description of his life and how he came to serve the Lord.

    Oh my gosh, Auntie Lynne, I get so nervous and get all tangled up in my speech, all the time. I don't what it is, I guess, I get so scared and I have no reason to be, I just can't be relaxed. How do you do it, without being all shooken up? LOL! I'm sure you're really good at this.

    I'm in the church choir and it's not so bad for me singing cause I'm not alone. But when I hear my name to go up and speak in front of everybody and introduce my husband, oh boy, I just get so nervous. I'm okay when I'm reading from paper. I am a children's Sunday school teacher and I'm okay with that. I take the kids up in front for a review after Sunday school, right before our morning service worship starts and that's okay with me.

    I never know when I'm going to go up and speak, I need some tips to help keep me comfortable, so I don't look like obviously nervous wreck, hehehehe! I try to dress nice and look pretty, so it has nothing to do with my appearance.

    My husband is always smiling and he's alot fun to be around with. He's so comfortable speaking in front of a large crowd, but not me. I'm so shy and like to stay behind the scenes. Everybody like's us and thinks we're so nice and we have a beautiful family.

    How can I not be so nervous? My husband tells me to just speak, stay calm, be myself, relax and I'll be fine.

    What does it take to be a good speaker in front of an audience, Auntie Lynne? Please give me some of your encouragement.

    Waving and smiling again!

    *Lisheous*

    Edited to correct errors
    Last edited by Lisheous; January 5, 2006, 06:15 PM.
    Faith, the evidence of things not seen, but things that are hopeful.

  • #2
    Re: Speaking in front of an audience

    Dear Lisheous, Public Speaking is my specialty! However, it took many years to learn how to stand and use the various techniques in which makes a great public speaker. The key is to be yourself and to be relaxed. Look above the heads of people. Glancing only a bit into their eyes as you scan your audience. Capture their attention as you calm your nerves also. Take control as you speak each word. Never show you are nervous. In other words ~ Ack! The stage is yours to do as you please. Remember, you are in control.

    Auntie Lynn

    Good Luck

    MWH RULES!
    Be AKAMAI ~ KOKUA Hawai`i!
    Philippians 4:13 --- I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.

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    • #3
      Re: Speaking in front of an audience

      Hi Auntie Lynne,

      I just knew you would come through for me. You're exactly right, everything you said, makes sense. (smile) I needed to hear that.

      I have glanced over their heads and when I looked directly into the eyes, that's is where I fall apart, cause everyone is looking at me. LOL! (laughing out loud) That is why I probably felt that way. The stage is yours to do as you please, remember, you are in control. Take control as you speak each word. Yeah, that's right too. Okay I've calmed down already, I feel so much better now. Thank you so much, I'm glad I asked.

      (((HUGGS)))
      Faith, the evidence of things not seen, but things that are hopeful.

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      • #4
        Re: Speaking in front of an audience

        when I do public speaking (from stadiums to school plays) I search out one person and speak to only him or her. Trying to appease an entire crowd takes a lot of experience so focus on one person and look at their expressions.

        Even if you are experienced (I've been doing public speaking for over 25-years) reduce the crowd to an intimate few where you can engage in their reactions. In my mind I see a crowd of one. Otherwise looking at the faces of a large audience is like looking down the sheer cliffs of the Pali without any railings to keep you from falling forward.
        Life is what you make of it...so please read the instructions carefully.

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        • #5
          Re: Speaking in front of an audience

          Hi Craig,

          Otherwise looking at the faces of a large audience is like looking down the sheer cliffs of the Pali without any railings to keep you from falling forward.

          That sounds like me, luckily I can hang on to the potium. (Laughing)

          Come to think of it, Craig, I noticed that when my husband speaks, he focuses on one person and he's at ease. They're are lots of small churches here and there and most of the memberships are small in numbers. We have about 20 to 30 members that come to church every Sunday. I will do my best the next time, I get to speak. Thank you for your opinion, that helps me to understand what it's like for someone else.

          I never thought of asking for help and I have been encourage and I'm feeling better about speaking, than I ever did before. Thanks again!
          Faith, the evidence of things not seen, but things that are hopeful.

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          • #6
            Re: Speaking in front of an audience

            Lynn & Craig have given excellent advice. Everybody's got a different technique to overcome stage fright, so try 'em all, and see what you can tailor to suit your situation.

            I've found that it is helpful if I have confidence in my preparation, and spend no effort worrying about what others will think of my presentation; then I know that I will do the best job I possibly can; I have no control over how others will perceive it.

            Oh, and it helps that I am not just a ham - I'm the whole pig! (That's how my father-out-law describes me!) Big ego and no shame - c'est moi. That's how I've been able to perform (live and on radio) in front of thousands.
            (Oh yeah - and I've had to bomb a few times too, in order to learn that it ain't so painful to do so, especially after the first time.)

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            • #7
              Re: Speaking in front of an audience

              Aloha,

              The best speakers are the ones who engage their audience. If one is too interoverted, the speech isolates the audience. Conversely, if one is too enamored with hearing him/herself talk, the same effect can occur. Those who can balance paying attention to his/her message while "forgetting" one's importance in that moment seem to be heard the best, imo.

              Reading your audience is key. When you use humour, wait until the laughter subsides, and yep, laugh with them while looking em (all) in the eye(s) before moving on. If your speech is a powerful and convicting one, do the same. Keep the timing and rhythm and believe that you are having a conversation with them and it will flow for you.

              pax

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              • #8
                Re: Speaking in front of an audience

                A good trick that's similar to Craig's is to always scope out where your friends are sitting in an audience whenever possible. Pick out a friend who's towards the back and to a side, one in the middle of the audience and one in the front opposite from the one in the back.

                When you get up to talk focus on and talk to them in a rotation, it'll make you look like you're speaking to everyone as you scan between your friends' faces.

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                • #9
                  Re: Speaking in front of an audience

                  While being prepared is a good thing sometimes it can be your demise, especially if your papers get mixed up.

                  I use cue cards with simple sentences to prompt me on the next issue to talk about. Instead of a paper with an entire speech scripted out where you have to read verbatim, I use 3 x 5 index cards with simple phrases such as: upcoming G7 meeting or Jan 31st car wash fundraiser.

                  You know the topic you just need a prompt to discuss it.

                  With index card prompts if you drop them and pick them up out of order, there's no problem. With a script, once out of place the whole speech is thrown out. Plus with prompts you naturally speak instead of sounding like you're reading.

                  Unstructured vs Structured public speaking. Usually unstructured is the best way to sound and look natural in front of an audience. Meaning the less formal prep the better. Too much emphasis on prepping results in a lock stepped Emcee that cannot adapt or change due to audience interpretation. That results in a speaker that stumbles over words and thoughts.

                  Know your subject matter and be enthusiastic about relating it just as you normally do over coffee with a friend at Starbucks. If you show that enthusiasm, the message is clearer to the listeners. Nobody will buy your statements if you don't look confident speaking about it right?

                  Remember you have something to relate to others, stay on that track and you'll do good.

                  And another thing, dress in what's comfortable to you. Attire that's uncomfortable draws attention to your stance instead of your message. If you gotta wear something you're not used to, wear it the day before, preferably all day until you do get used to it, and that includes that new pair of shoes too.

                  Keep a glass of room temperature water with a twist of lemon in it. Ice water will constrict your vocal chords. Lemons actually relax the vocal chords and if you're nervous the last thing you want is a dry throat.

                  Get away from that Podium!!! I see a lot of speakers hide behind one as if its a shield. Grab that mike and walk the stage get up close to your audience, shake their hands, let them know you're one of them and they relax a bit. A comfortable audience helps a lot. In otherwords take control of the audience don't let them control you. It's called "working the crowd".

                  What about stadiums where you are on the 50-yard line in front of 50,000 people? Imagine the crowd as a very large bouquet of roses and lavish in it's wonderful scent. Take the entire crowd as a single entity listening to the rise and fall of it's murmurs as a cue to their response. Listen to the overall tone of the crowd instead of picking out that one heckler that will always be there.
                  Last edited by craigwatanabe; January 6, 2006, 12:45 PM.
                  Life is what you make of it...so please read the instructions carefully.

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                  • #10
                    Re: Speaking in front of an audience

                    Oh, I'm so happy to hear everyone's feedback. It makes me feel more comfortable now. I will take all of your suggestions and be calm. I needed to hear a variety advice, on how I should be. I will print all this out and keep reading it. Thank you for supporting and caring, it all makes sense.

                    Thank you,

                    Auntie Lynne
                    Craig
                    Leo
                    Pua'i
                    Peshkwe
                    Faith, the evidence of things not seen, but things that are hopeful.

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                    • #11
                      Re: Speaking in front of an audience

                      just don't get intimidated by their dour looks on their faces. remember YOU are up there and they are not. that impresses people and even moreso, if you come across with conviction and enthusiasm.
                      They may seem like;
                      "ok, impress me."
                      on the outside but internally they are going; hey she's good.
                      Or at least you must assume this.
                      Don't do a monotone delivery.
                      Punch a point in each sentence.
                      Don't do a high school delivery, such as we see even on the telly by supposed pros and many in commercials:

                      duh DUHDUHDUH duuuh,
                      du DUHDUH DUH duh!
                      duh DUHDUHDUH duuuh,
                      du DUHDUH DUH duh.

                      that's how they sound and it is awful.

                      Raise your eyesbrows for inflection and show YOU are interested in your subject and smile when you speak. Lean into your subject. Know your subject so you don't need notes.
                      know more about your subject than you need to say.


                      another thing that helps; remember many others who do public speaking are MUCH less attractive than you. And many seemingly have less to say than you
                      BUT.
                      they are doing it.
                      SO!
                      You must say;
                      hey, wot da hell; if THEY can do that, I sure as heyall can!


                      often i see someone like, say... Danny deVito on the telly and think, jeez. If HE can do that, I can.
                      meaning; what if HE, being a very short plump dude let that keep him from charging ahead? obviously, he didn't.
                      and he comes across as a charismatic, interesting person. Cuz he switched it on from inside.
                      You can and will do that, too!


                      (oh, and if da butterflies steh goin all li'dat, take a shot or two of tequila. an ounce or two of liquid courage.)

                      The alchohol will wear of and be supplanted by the buzz ya get when you see the world is impressed with your oratorial skills.
                      Last edited by kimo55; January 9, 2006, 02:02 PM.

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                      • #12
                        Re: Speaking in front of an audience

                        Wow! Kimo! After reading your post, I'm all fired up and like go debate anybody!!!

                        Auntie Lynn
                        Be AKAMAI ~ KOKUA Hawai`i!
                        Philippians 4:13 --- I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.

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                        • #13
                          Re: Speaking in front of an audience

                          GO there, gurl freyund!

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                          • #14
                            Re: Speaking in front of an audience

                            Originally posted by 1stwahine
                            After reading your post, I'm all fired up and like go debate anybody!!!
                            And after reading your post, Kimo, I'm all fired up and like go have those two shots of tequila! But I still have another hour til pau hana...

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                            • #15
                              Re: Speaking in front of an audience

                              Damn straight!
                              then the speech! "Beertender, another bar, please!

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