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How to Overcome Stage Fright

Learn how to overcome stage fright from media coach TJ Walker in this Howcast public speaking training video.


So how do you overcome stage fright? Well for starters you don't want to follow the typical advice. A lot of advice is imagine your audience naked or in their underwear. Well depending on our audience that's either too exciting or too disgusting. That's horrible advice. People come to me and ask this question all of the time. T.J. how do I get over my stage fright? And they expect me to say meditate and visualize a standing ovation or drink green tea or take beta blockers. Believe it or not that's all useless advice.

Here's something you're not gonna want to hear. If you have stage fright chances are it's because you fear legitimately that you're gonna be awful, that you're gonna be boring. Because guess what? Most speeches are boring so if you fright maybe there's a good reason for it. But the answer is not to mask your feelings or to try to wall paper over a problem. The solution is to actually have a great speech and to be interesting and engaging and memorable.

Part of what's giving you this fright is the fear of the unknown. You don't really know how you're going to come across to the audience, therefore, you deduce correctly there's a chance you could bomb, that you could be awful, that you could bore them. Well that's a legitimate reason to be nervous, to have fright. Here is the solution and I guarantee you it will work.

You need to practice your presentation, your speech on video and get to the point where you can look at it. Point to it and say, wow, that person is fantastic. And you're pointing to a video of yourself. Now you may have to practice once, twice and maybe 20 times. It doesn't matter. If you can look at a video of yourself and you think wow, that person's boring. Guess what? You're probably right. You probably are boring.

The solution isn't to just feel better about it or do a shot of alcohol. The solution is to change your speech and actually make it interesting. So if you want to get over stage fright you need a role model of yourself being successful and you can do it with video. Keep practicing on video until you like your speech. If you do that your stage fright will disappear.

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