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I can't speak/do presentations watch

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    I'm normally pretty social, talkative and well spoken but whenever I am assigned to do a presentation or speak publicly my character turns into one of extreme anxiety, worry and depression.

    I can't speak in front of an audience. I tend to hurry, which ends up with my mumbling, jumbling and stuttering through rather disastrously. I think I have some sort of social anxiety disorder which comes into play whenever I have to do things like these. I also get short of breath and I just completely become a train wreck.

    I'm going into university soon and I'm going to be doing a degree that most likely would require a presentation as part of assessment in atleast one or two of the years.

    How do I evade this issue? It has been happening for 3 years now and the worst was in year 11 english where I completely embarassed myself whilst reading out from a script in English.

    Any tips/advice? It would be great to hear from people who have overcome it.
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    Ermmm some sort of classes/course which builds up your confidence?
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    I had this same problem at university. I decided to do alot of exercise, to really work my heart muscle/s and the feeling of high-intensity exercise almost mimics the feelings/symptoms of having a panic-attack and the body can get used to that, i.e. high heart rate etc...

    Exercise helped enormously, physiologically, and so my nerves were so much more manageable when I had to make presentations - knowing you're physiologically very fit and relaxed gives you so much more confidence, mentally, too. If you do struggle, you could talk to your GP and there is medication such as the beta-blocker propranolol which can be used by/for people who do have attacks of anxiety and panic in such situations.

    If I'm not mistaken, caffeine isn't particularly helpful in regards to anxiety so maybe consider reducing your intake of coffee, tea etc...
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    Grr this forum seriously needs a multiquote option. Anyway, meena, what kind of classes do you recommend?

    (Original post by Anonymous)
    I had this same problem at university. I decided to do alot of exercise, to really work my heart muscle/s and the feeling of high-intensity exercise almost mimics the feelings/symptoms of having a panic-attack and the body can get used to that, i.e. high heart rate etc...

    Exercise helped enormously, physiologically, and so my nerves were so much more manageable when I had to make presentations - knowing you're physiologically very fit and relaxed gives you so much more confidence, mentally, too. If you do struggle, you could talk to your GP and there is medication such as the beta-blocker propranolol which can be used by/for people who do have attacks of anxiety and panic in such situations.

    If I'm not mistaken, caffeine isn't particularly helpful in regards to anxiety so maybe consider reducing your intake of coffee, tea etc...
    Thanks a lot for your reply! Can you give me some more information on the heart exercises you did? I am more than willing to try it. I will also consider visiting my GP too then.
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    I used to suffer with this too but have found the only thing that has helped is practice. And in every day life there isn't much opportunity for public speaking so this is harder than it sounds.

    Put yourself forward for things like a member of the comittee for a sports or music group, or organise a charity event with college. Anything where you can practice talking to groups of people.

    I know it's hard to start with, but eventually it does get eaier and your confidence will grow. Hope this helps you
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    (Original post by Anonymous)
    How do I evade this issue? It has been happening for 3 years now and the worst was in year 11 english where I completely embarassed myself whilst reading out from a script in English.
    You can't "evade" public speaking for the rest of your life. What if you're required to do one as part of your job? We already know you'll need to do one at uni. It's best to become more comfortable with doing them rather than finding a way to avoid them.

    I try to become very familiar with the subject material well, and with what I am going to talk about / to. Then, when I am presenting, it's not a case of remembering / reciting stuff, I just talk (with postcard notes prompting me in the right directions) about the subject matter calmly and slowly.
    The best tips really are to talk slowly and to know your subject matter really, really well.

    James
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    (Original post by M_E_X)
    You can't "evade" public speaking for the rest of your life. What if you're required to do one as part of your job? We already know you'll need to do one at uni. It's best to become more comfortable with doing them rather than finding a way to avoid them.

    I try to become very familiar with the subject material well, and with what I am going to talk about / to. Then, when I am presenting, it's not a case of remembering / reciting stuff, I just talk (with postcard notes prompting me in the right directions) about the subject matter calmly and slowly.
    The best tips really are to talk slowly and to know your subject matter really, really well.

    James
    Poor choice of word I guess. I meant more so diminish the issue instead of just run away or avoid it How slowly can you talk before it gets weird? I am more than willing to try just talking slowly, but I don't want to sound too abnormal or obvious lol
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    Go to solo acting classes.
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    (Original post by M_E_X)
    You can't "evade" public speaking for the rest of your life. What if you're required to do one as part of your job? We already know you'll need to do one at uni. It's best to become more comfortable with doing them rather than finding a way to avoid them.

    I try to become very familiar with the subject material well, and with what I am going to talk about / to. Then, when I am presenting, it's not a case of remembering / reciting stuff, I just talk (with postcard notes prompting me in the right directions) about the subject matter calmly and slowly.
    The best tips really are to talk slowly and to know your subject matter really, really well.

    James
    when will we ever have to do one at uni?
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    (Original post by Gr8)
    when will we ever have to do one at uni?
    We'll most likely have to do one during the group or individual projects.
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    (Original post by Gr8)
    when will we ever have to do one at uni?
    Did you read this person's first post?
    (Original post by OP)
    I'm going into university soon and I'm going to be doing a degree that most likely would require a presentation as part of assessment in atleast one or two of the years.
    -_-.
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    I know people who have been giving presentations for years and still get nervous giving them. You never completely get over your stage fright but it does get better with practise, I remember the first talk I gave to my sponsors - I could barely sleep for a week beforehand and I made a royal fool of myself on the day.. But If I've learned anything over the last year, it's that taking time out to know your subject INCREDIBLY well helps immensely. Nerves are 100x worse if you aren't sure what you're talking about. Also, rehearse. Get really familiar with your slides and know what's coming next and how you're going to explain what's there.
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    (Original post by Anonymous)
    Grr this forum seriously needs a multiquote option. Anyway, meena, what kind of classes do you recommend?



    Thanks a lot for your reply! Can you give me some more information on the heart exercises you did? I am more than willing to try it. I will also consider visiting my GP too then.
    High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) - google it for more information. This form of exercise has helped enormously for me personally, i.e. if you're on an exercise bike, cycle hard for say 30 seconds, then peddle slowly for the next minute, then cycle hard again for the next 30 seconds, and so on...for, I don't know, 5 minutes. You get the idea...

    I feel HIIT mimics the panic attack, this form of exercise gets your heart rate up pretty suddenly, from its resting rate, similar to when you have a panic attack...your body becomes (more) accustomed to this feeling and more efficient as a result. This is from my own personal experience. I've REALLY struggled with presentations in the past - from throwing up regularly before making speeches, to swigging a fair bit of vodka prior to making presentations - obviously not a particularly good idea as you can slur your words, and it's a generally dumb way of coping with anxiety and panic.

    As an insurance policy, I do sometimes take with me about 1/4 of a propranolol tablet when making speeches, if I'm having doubts over whether I can physiologically handle the situation adequately enough.
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    Don't look at people in the audience. Make it look like you are, but don't directly look at people, I always found this put me off and made me nervous. If you want to read off a script, or presentation slide or whatever, I would suggest not reading through it for a few days before the presentation. Make the presentation, or write the speech, read through and check it, but then leave it alone. I know that sounds weird, but for me, I found you don't rush yourself when you're reading something you haven't read for a few days, cause you've forgotten it word for word so you're automatically more careful about it. Obviously don't forget what it is you're actually talking about lol, but just forget the exact wording of it, if that makes sense. Might not work for some, I realise it may be a strange way of doing it, but it helped me.

    Also remember, people at uni won't care. You're all there because you're interested in that subject, so people will more than likely want to know what you've got to say, or even they don't, they will have to cause what you say could be important.
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    Focus on an inanimate object in the audience and talk to it.
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    (Original post by little_red_sox)
    I know people who have been giving presentations for years and still get nervous giving them. You never completely get over your stage fright but it does get better with practise, I remember the first talk I gave to my sponsors - I could barely sleep for a week beforehand and I made a royal fool of myself on the day.. But If I've learned anything over the last year, it's that taking time out to know your subject INCREDIBLY well helps immensely. Nerves are 100x worse if you aren't sure what you're talking about. Also, rehearse. Get really familiar with your slides and know what's coming next and how you're going to explain what's there.
    I'll keep this in mind, thank you!

    (Original post by Anonymous)
    High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) - google it for more information. This form of exercise has helped enormously for me personally, i.e. if you're on an exercise bike, cycle hard for say 30 seconds, then peddle slowly for the next minute, then cycle hard again for the next 30 seconds, and so on...for, I don't know, 5 minutes. You get the idea...

    I feel HIIT mimics the panic attack, this form of exercise gets your heart rate up pretty suddenly, from its resting rate, similar to when you have a panic attack...your body becomes (more) accustomed to this feeling and more efficient as a result. This is from my own personal experience. I've REALLY struggled with presentations in the past - from throwing up regularly before making speeches, to swigging a fair bit of vodka prior to making presentations - obviously not a particularly good idea as you can slur your words, and it's a generally dumb way of coping with anxiety and panic.

    As an insurance policy, I do sometimes take with me about 1/4 of a propranolol tablet when making speeches, if I'm having doubts over whether I can physiologically handle the situation adequately enough.
    Thanks for your reply! I'll be sure to try out your exercise, hopefully I would be able to see at least a slight improvement in my anxiety issue.
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    Oh - I think someone else might have already mentioned.. Avoid caffiene at all costs before your talk, even if you've been awake all night crapping yourself. Caffiene wakes you up, but a side effect is anxiety.. And you do a much better job running on adrenaline than red bull, i speak from personal disasters
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    (Original post by M_E_X)
    Did you read this person's first post?


    -_-.
    :p: :o: :mad: :confused: :rolleyes: :cool: :eek: :woo: :eek3: :yep:
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    Personally I find that practising in private helps alot. I used to be just like you in that I turned to jelly if I had to stand up infront of people and present things- however, since having been assigned to reading the 1st and 2nd readings in church (regularly) I've become far more confident about it all. What tends to help me is getting into a zone. Before I get up to read out I just blank everything else out and breathe really deeply, think about what I'm going to be reading and then just go for it. when I'm reading I focus totally on the page, and look up every so often, but not at the congregation, but just behind the back row, just so that it appears I'm interacting with them and not being too shy.
    Try to relax as you're doing it, and don't think about what others might be thinking of you- if you make a mistake...well everyone does a friend of mine made a mahoosive mistake in a history speech she was doing once infront of our whole year group. She was supposed to say "on entry to Virgnia" and it came out as "on entry into the vagina" :s we found it pretty funny but she was absolutely mortified- however she's still getting up to present and read things out as often as she possibly can- don't be afraid of making mistakes! We are only human in the end and people will understand how nervous you are so just do your best and you'll be fine presenting is not everyones cup of tea.
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    (Original post by Future African game vet)
    Personally I find that practising in private helps alot. I used to be just like you in that I turned to jelly if I had to stand up infront of people and present things- however, since having been assigned to reading the 1st and 2nd readings in church (regularly) I've become far more confident about it all. What tends to help me is getting into a zone. Before I get up to read out I just blank everything else out and breathe really deeply, think about what I'm going to be reading and then just go for it. when I'm reading I focus totally on the page, and look up every so often, but not at the congregation, but just behind the back row, just so that it appears I'm interacting with them and not being too shy.
    Try to relax as you're doing it, and don't think about what others might be thinking of you- if you make a mistake...well everyone does a friend of mine made a mahoosive mistake in a history speech she was doing once infront of our whole year group. She was supposed to say "on entry to Virgnia" and it came out as "on entry into the vagina" :s we found it pretty funny but she was absolutely mortified- however she's still getting up to present and read things out as often as she possibly can- don't be afraid of making mistakes! We are only human in the end and people will understand how nervous you are so just do your best and you'll be fine presenting is not everyones cup of tea.
    Thanks for the advice, very valuable
 
 
 
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