Talking has always been my thing. Ever since I was a kid, I’ve always been talkative. I had a penchant for the dramatic, so if you gave me half the chance, I would undoubtedly talk your ear off. Naturally this got me into a lot of trouble early on. I was constantly being reprimanded for my chatty nature and it even earned me a special table next to my first grade teacher (Despite her best efforts, my new position in the classroom now allowed me to address everyone at the same time).
The one place where it did pay off though was when it came to oral presentations. I’ve never been fazed by speaking in front of a group so here are my tips for success.
Dress for success. Throw on your snazziest outfit. Not only will you want to look good while everyone is paying attention to you, it will do wonders for your confidence.
Have a small bottle of water. In the case that you lose yourself or go blank, you can always take a long drawn out sip while you figure out exactly where you are, what class you are in and what it is you want to say. Seriously, this one is a life saver.
Practice. Practice. Practice. Practice. Practice. Practice. Practice. Practice. And when you’re done. Practice some more. Nothing will set you up for success more than knowing your material through and through.
Use your friends. If you have any friends that are in the same class as you, give them questions to ask you at some point during your presentation. This will make you look extra intelligent, and help to break up the monotony of hearing one persons voice for too long. Be sure to return the favor.
Fake it till you make it. If you are feeling nervous, fake confidence. Even if you feel shaky and fragile, it is very hard to see nervousness in others as long as your voice is stable and you are not too fidgety.
Use the podium. Again, if you are feeling nervous, grasp the podium like your life depended on it and do not let go until your presentation is done. This will help to keep you standing up right and tall and it also keeps your hands preoccupied.
Use these tips to get the best out of your presentations and make the best of finals. Happy studying.