Public Speaking. It’s like a middle-school relationship. It’s awkward and uncomfortable and it leaves you with sweaty palms (side note: What’s with the excessively damp glands of 6th-grade-boy hands? Asking you WebMD writers out there).

But let me tell you something about public speaking and young-love, you can improve both with a few tips from those who are more experienced and with lots of practice. Luckily for you, I’m here today with vast knowledge from my Public Speaking-101 course and a little help to help you ease those big-crowd-jitters.

Confidence is Key. A saying that is true in pretty much all aspects in life, and is no exception when it comes to the delivery of your speech, presentation,  or elementary wedding proposal. Your confidence level affects your audience’s attention, participation, and ability to connect with what you’re saying. So say it loud and say it proud.

A huge component of your audience buying into your confidence level, even if you’re totally faking it, is your body language. The way you present yourself will arguably do more speaking than you will. So here are 5 tips to looking more confident.

  1. The Box: Imagine that there is a cardboard box in front of chest and confine your arm movements to the inside of that box. It turns out that exaggerated movements are interpreted as “untrustworthy” to an audience.
  2. Hold the Ball: Pretend you’re holding a basketball while speaking, it will subconsciously suggest to the audience that you are literally holding your idea and thus exude more confidence.
  3. Pyramid Hands: Shaking hands giving you away? Not anymore. This idea comes straight from those sturdy Egyptian pyramids to settle your trembles. Those babies have been around for about 5000 years and haven’t flinched. Not once. Mimic our model by clasping both hands together in a relaxed pyramid. Now you’re calm, cool, and collected.
  4. Wide Stance: Channel your inner Beyonce (minus the leotard) and stand proud with your legs shoulder distance apart. This will exude control the whole way through
  5. Palms Up or Down: If you occasionally gesture with you palms up,  it indicates openness and honesty. While if you gesture palms down, it can be viewed as a sign of strength and authority. Either is a win! Just make sure to use them intentionally and that your gesture matches your mood.

 

I’ve feathered your wings and you’re ready to fly! So fly, my child, fly! *I say with a wide stance, with my palms down as I gently flap my “wings” with in the box, obviously*.