The causes of glossophobia: The fear of public speaking
Even though stage fright is a useful and necessary thing to give us courage, it can very quickly take over our emotions and make us paralyzed. Note that 80% of people get stage fright when it comes to public speaking!
1. Fear related to what’s at stake
Whether it’s a job interview, an exam or a selection test, the more important the objective, the greater the stress. The fear of failing is omnipresent.
2. Fear of being judged
The fear of what others think, of displeasing others, being criticized and being mocked is intense. People develop anxiety in particular if they think that others see their increased capacity for emotion.
3. Fear of incompetence
People feel inadequate in terms of recognition. This fear is often the cause of stress and ill-being at work. Underestimating your competence is far from being an isolated complex; indeed, it has a name: imposter syndrome.
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6 exercises to overcome glossophobia
1. Regain your self-confidence
List your strengths and achievements. These strengths will help you regain your self-confidence. Note that in order to be comfortable with others, you must first be comfortable with yourself. It’s therefore important to detach yourself from what others think and allow yourself the right to make mistakes, which is essential for learning.
Don’t hesitate to practice in front of a mirror. This technique, which is widely used in theater, allows you to better appreciate your image, improve and therefore avoid being blocked by what others think.
3. Identify the causes
It’s essential to identify the causes of your anxiety to better deal with your fears. This way you will only keep the “good” stress that acts as a driving force and not as a brake. Take a step back from the situation and don’t hesitate to delegate, dare to say no and organize your work.
4. Take the pressure off
Do some relaxation exercises such as sophrology for example. Breathing is a key part of good speaking, so focus on abdominal breathing, which allows you to control your breath and relax.
5. Work on your non-verbal communication
It’s very important to work on non-verbal communication, which is an essential cornerstone of public speaking. Make sure your feet are well-grounded, scan your audience regularly, and don’t put your hands in your pockets. If you are shaking, you can use a piece of cardboard or a pen to calm this symptom.
⚠️ Beware of unpleasant noises for your audience! Don’t take a single sheet of paper that might accentuate the shaking and make a noise. Also avoid retractable click pens which might tempt you to play with them…
6. Learn to cope with blunders
Everyone has a moment of panic when they forget something, make a slip of the tongue or babble. It’s therefore very important to know how to deal with these problems. Remain spontaneous, don’t hesitate to use humor for example or to ask your audience directly to participate, which is an effective way to capture the attention of those who were no longer listening.
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Editor’s note – The need to find the cause of this fear
Managing your stress and speaking in public isn’t easy. And yet, it’s very important to free yourself from glossophobia to improve your quality of life and thus your well-being. Don’t hesitate to get in touch with a psychologist to work on this fear. A professional will be able to listen to you and help you find the cause of your stress.
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