There was a survey done of people’s top ten fears: Number 2 was dying, number 1 it was fear of public speaking! There it is – people would rather die than speak in public. Stand up comedy is public speaking as an extreme sport, so we have some tips and insights on how to get from trembling terror to confident charisma:
1 – BREATHE – We know that sounds really obvious because to stop breathing would be fulfilling the number 2 fear but hear us out:
In ” showbiz” most performers will take the 5 minutes before going on stage to ” get in the zone” which mainly involves concentrated breathing and letting any other thoughts from the day drift off.
Forget what you need to do tomorrow or worrying about what time the kids need picked up, just focus on the next 10/15/20 minutes or however long your presentation is going to last.
2 – OPENING LINE – Again this seems really obvious but you’d be surprised by how many people who just don’t know how to start. Know exactly the first words you are going to say even if those words are ” Hello, my name is….
3 – DRINK WATER – Taking a glass of water with you can help with the pace of your presentation and buy you thinking time if you get too nervous. The most common complaint from nerves is a dry mouth and so having water with you is akin to a comfort blanket.
4 – MAKE MISTAKES – Most people worry that they will make a mistake, forget what they wanted to say or generally muck up. So what? We are all human and mistakes happen but it’s how we handle them that makes the difference.
Lots of celebrity comedians make deliberate mistakes in their show so that they can connect with their audience.
There is a realism to mistakes that helps everyone to identify and get on board with you as a presenter and creates a sense of unity. This post should really be headed IMPERFECT your pitch.
5. – REHEARSE – Professionals rehearse and rehearse and rehearse. They know their timing inside out, where on stage they will be as each section of their show is delivered. They prompt hecklers and check kits equipment and lights are all working. Business people often skip rehearsal and it shows. So be sure to plan time in your diary to rehearse in advance.
Stand Up and Be Counted offer mentoring for individuals and workshops for groups to hone their skills and help nail that pitch. We delve into details and develop style, impact and confidence that gets improved business results. If you would like to explore how this might help your team contact us for a quote.