Top Ten Ways to Transform Stage Fright Into Captivating Connecting
by Sandra Zimmer
Those of you who have the most stage fright have the potential to touch listeners deeply. That is because you have the feelings! Your feelings are up to the surface where they can be used to create genuine emotional connection with others. You cannot think away your feeling, deny them, or cover them up. I am sure you have tried, as I did, and it just did not work to control the emotional intensity with your mind. So, your task is to transform your intense feelings of fear and anxiety into the energy of passion so you can speak straight to people’'s hearts. The key is authenticity. Stage fright is fear of feeling in front of people. As you give yourself permission to be genuine, your fear dissolves into captivating connection.
Get out of you head and get into your body. Cultivate the ability to relax your mental attention down into your skin all the way to your feet. Imagine you melt energy out of your head and let it flow and fill your entire body. Grounding clears your head and creates a sense of strength and safety. You can think on your feet when you are in you feet. This is the most effective antidote to stage fright and presentation anxiety I know. If you need help on grounding, try using my cassette tape "Ground Yourself For Star Quality Presence".
Warm up your body.
Before you present or perform, make sure you have done enough physical exercise so that everything is loose and flowing. You may not realize how much physical tension impairs your ability to communicate freely. Actors and athletes know the power of warm up. You should too.
Let others see your real self rather than projecting an image you want them to see.
Create your style of speaking, performing, and communication based on being who you really are rather than who you think you should be. The more real you are, the less fear you feel.
Find out where you tense up and block the free flow of energy in your body when you become the center of attention.
Explore the tension with curiosity rather than self-judgment. Give yourself permission to really feel the tension and experience it until it releases into flow.
Breathe. I mean really breathe.
Take deep breaths, fast breaths, slow breaths, until you relax. Breathing helps your brain oxygenize and relaxes you body. You may get "high", so don’t do it driving. Spend 10 to 15 minutes breathing an hour before your presentation.
Receive your "audience".
Open yourself to take people in. Use "soft eyes" when making eye contact so that you feel like you are drinking them in through your eyes. This reduces resistance to them and draws them to you magnetically. It makes you feel that you are accepting them unconditionally.
Let go of perfectionism.
Give up the idea that you have to be perfect in order to be effective. Effectiveness is not about your performance. It is what happens to them, your listeners. If they are changed by your communication for the better, then you have been effective and it is enough.
Be there for them.
Make the presentation about serving them not about your performance. Put yourself in the position of being there to share your experience, knowledge, and wisdom. Mantra to yourself "I am here to love you and to share myself with you".
Choose to like them rather than worrying if they will like you.
Extend your love and acceptance to them and give them permission to receive it or not. This is a very powerful space from which to communicate.
Talk one-on-one, even in a large group.
Make connection with one person at a time. Have a conversation with one person, then another, then another.
It's Your Time To Shine:
How to Overcome Fear of
Develop Authentic Presence
and Speak from Your Heart
...the book that has helped thousands transform
stage fright into powerful, authentic presence.
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