Speaking In Public
A Primer Lesson in Overcoming Stage Fright and Being A Good Public SpeakerThis installment of DJU deals with the phenomenon of public speaking, which is an integral part of our duties as DJ’s and Emcees. We hope to give you some tools as well as encouragement to benefit from in this very vital area. A little stage fright is actually good! You are more aware of what is going on, you react faster when you are nervous, and you are forced to think on your feet so to speak. The key is to recognize this, control it, and use it to your advantage.
First, let’s examine why you feel this way you do by way of example. A good friend of mine and I were talking about this 2 weeks ago. He went through the Dale Carnegie course on public speaking. He was the 1st volunteer to speak and did well, even with the teacher trying to trip him up. The teacher finally got the class to laugh, make noise, and then told them to shut up and look directly at Ben. At that moment he got nervous and could not continue. The reason: He felt the quiet of the room and the sudden weight of everyone’s eyes staring at him. He became uncomfortable because all of the attention that was suddenly focused on him. And, the smaller the room is, the worse this feeling gets. That’s because there are fewer distractions, less noise, what we call the HUSH factor.
The same thing happens at a wedding. Music is playing, people talking, laughing and clinking glasses. Suddenly everything stops when you announce the beginning of the party. You become the object of attention, without anything to hide behind. Just you, the microphone, and ALL those people. But fear not, this will subside as you do more and more events!!!
The best way to overcome this anxiety is to actually PRACTICE in advance of the event. Get the names of all the people in the bridal party and go over the names with the bride and groom. WRITE DOWN any tough pronunciations. It really helps to rewrite the difficult names phonetically.
Practice a few times and you will have it. Also, practice speaking the names into a tape recorder so you can hear what you sound like and to hear your pronunciation. Finally practice saying the announcements into your system. Turn up some music and then stop it and begin the announcements. This will simulate the sudden quietness. It may not be a bad idea to get a sound effect CD with restaurant noises to simulate the wedding scene. You may want to mix some music together with the SFX to get a real feel before killing the volume. Say the names into the microphone and PA so you can practice in a real situation
One of the main keys to appearing confident in public is to look confident In this regard, image IS everything. Smile, relax, and try to avoid making direct eye contact with anyone as you make your remarks. Stare instead at the foreheads or tops of the audience’s heads. It will still look like you are looking right at them, but you really aren’t. Remember to take deep breaths and breathe normally. It is a phenomenon that you feel like you are speaking faster than you really are, because your adrenaline is going. Slow down, pace yourself and make sure that people understand your voice communication as you speak. Remember no one else except the Bride and groom know what you are going to say, so you have an advantage. Keep that in mind as you speak. That’s your edge and your ticket to good clear public speaking…every time!
The following Internet web link has some excellent strategies by a well-known authority on public speaking. I invite you all to visit this site and profit from the very excellent information contained there. Go to http://www.ljlseminars.com/anxiety.htm .
Good luck in all of your speaking endeavors!
Filed Under: Performing
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