November 19, 2020 at 6:16 am #28202Justin PayneParticipant
Do you guys that beat stuttering still have fears of giving a presentation in front of 30 or more people? I’ve beaten fears like roller coasters and swimming in the ocean but class presentations really scare me and I feel like that’s the only thing holding me back in life!November 19, 2020 at 9:05 am #28203JavierModerator
Hi Justin! Do you have to do these presentations online (via Zoom, Skype or similar), or not? It makes a big difference in my opinion.
For example, when I have to give a speech in the SAM meetings (every Saturday at 9am NYC time; if you have never attended to one of these meetings, you definitely should, they are really motivating!), what I do is that I minimize the Zoom window, so that the only things that my screen shows are a Word file with the bullet points of my presentation, and in the other half of the screen I have another Word document with the entire script of my presentation. So those are the only 2 things I see in my computer, so it is more or less like being alone.
In any case, I always try to focus on being expressive and passionate. I try to forget about my audience, and I really do. I just try to be as passionate as I can, while speaking slowly, articulating all of my syllables and words, and taking pauses every few words. Make these pauses last longer than normal. This will help you remain calm. And the audience will appreciate it, as you will be giving them time to process all the information that you’re saying.
As Lee said in his books and video courses available here, it is normal to “feel butterflies in your stomach” before giving a speech or presentation. Everyone has those. But something very different is to feel anxiety, we don’t want that, and we can get rid of that. Have you read the book “Speech Anxiety to Public Speaking” and watched the video lessons? These two can help you a great deal. You can also watch videos of coaching sessions, you can filter them by “presentations”. That should help you too.
I insist that you should attend to the SAM meetings, if you haven’t already, and try to slowly expand your comfort zones. You can start by making brief comments about the speeches of others. Something like, “hi, I really enjoyed your speech. Thank you”. Something as simple as that. But you will have proven to yourself that you can do it. Celebrate that small victory. The next week, do it again, and make a longer comment. Celebrate that victory. Keep on doing it. You will see that it gets easier and easier. And one day you could even become the speaker of that day, and give your a speech. The coaches will be happy to help you prepare it and give you advice, like we’ve done with others.
Hope this ha helped you. Feel free to ask me anything else 🙂November 21, 2020 at 1:52 pm #28222Leah AreffModerator
Hi Justin, I cured 3 and a half years ago. I had speech fears for a year after that. I still occasionally get a speech fear (I am talking once every couple of months).
Just 3 weeks ago I had a speech fear when hosting the SAM meeting, as I am not the greatest at public speaking, but I did not stutter. Bottom line, no matter how many fears will pop up in the future, I will not stutter.
I dare you to ask FLUENT people if they experience fears when giving a presentation of more than 30 people, as you said you do. I GUARANTEE you that most of them will say yes. So if fluent people have these fears, why are you being so hard on yourself?November 23, 2020 at 8:14 am #28238JavierModerator
Exactly! Most of PWS and even PWSS treat ourselves too harshly. We will never be perfect, no one will ever be. So, as human being that we are, we shouldn’t punish ourselves for our mistakes. Instead, we should learn from those (“what could I’ve done to avoid it?”), try to improve (knowing that we will never be perfect) and keep on with our lives.
The Crutches, the mind training treatments should help you expand your comfort zones until you don’t feel anxiety when giving presentations to groups of people. I would also suggest you to try to attend to as many SAM meetings and start by making a comment or two, step by step, proving to yourself that you can do it, expanding your comfort zones, until you give a speech at the SAM meetings, or infront of your class. You can do it!
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