Secrets of Public Speaking :: No. 8Monday, February 23, 2015
Today I want to let you in on the number one thing that makes my speaking engagements go much more smoothly: I don't wing it.
I grew up studying music and minored in dance, which is the reason I don't get stage fright when I give presentations even though I'm an introvert. Another aspect of studying music and dance is that full dress rehearsals were the norm. This extra layer of preparation is a practice I've carried over when planning for speaking engagements. Long before I get on stage, I will put on the outfit I'll be wearing the day of the event and do several run throughs of my talk in front of a mirror.
This does a couple of things: First, it reinforces in my brain that this is something I need to be "on" for. Second, it allows me to see how my clothing moves while I'm talking. This gives tremendous peace of mind on the day of the event and allows me to focus fully on my presentation without the anxiety distractions of a potential wardrobe malfunction.
This may seem vain (and I'm okay with that), but a full dress rehearsal helps me clear my head and focus on what I was hired to do.