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Toastmasters Knowledge  
Tips for Successful Speaking
Tips for Successful Speaking

The following pointers have been adapted from an article on the Toastmasters website.

Feeling some nervousness before giving a speech is natural and healthy. It shows you care about doing well. But too much nervousness can be detrimental. Here are some ideas on how you can control your nervousness and make effective, memorable presentations:

1. Know the room. If you are not familiar with the place in which you will speak, arrive early, walk around the speaking area and decide where you want to stand.

2. Know the audience. Some people say that it's easier to speak to a group of friends than a group of strangers, which is what makes Bicester Achievers a great place to practice. If you do not know your audience, greet some of them as they arrive.

3. Know your material. If you are not familiar with your material or are uncomfortable with it, your nervousness will increase. Practice your speech and revise it if necessary.

4. Relax. Easier said than done? Find some exercises that help you do this, like breathing or stretching.

5. Visualize yourself giving a great speech. Think about how you would like to sound and the response you would like from the audience. When you visualise yourself being successful, you will be!

6. Remember that people want you to succeed. They do not want you to fail, but are there to listen to you.

7. Do not apologise. If you tell people you are nervous, you may call to the audiences' attention something that they might not actually notice.

8. Concentrate on your message - not your medium. Instead of focusing on how nervous you feel, concentrate on getting your message across to your audience.

9. Turn nervousness into positive energy or enthusiasm

10. Get as much experience as you can. Experience builds confidence, which is the key to effective speaking.

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