Introverts are thought to be shy and naive people. Even though this isn’t always the case, they’re usually the quiet type that make better listeners than talkers. While listening, they’re able to understand the other person’s need by paying proper attention and relating with their story through deep thoughts and feelings.
public speaking isn’t something ‘seemingly’ natural to an introvert because they’re naturally inwards. They like to work in the background rather than put themselves out there. They shy away from the spotlight. Public speaking is perceived to be only for the extroverts ofcourse for the obvious reasons. They’re outgoing, more expressive and they love crowd. Infact, that energizes them.
Being an introvert myself, I’m not usually the type to bring myself forward nor am I the type to raise my hand in class to answer questions. Even though most of the times I’d know the answers but I’d prefer to whisper it to someone else to respond.
One thing I’ve discovered is, most introverts I meet are actually gifted public speakers! Yes that’s true. I’ve met some with exceptional sense of humor that they could pass as stand-up comedians. I’ve met others whose oratory prowess is over-the roof. It infact took me years to embrace the public-speaking part of me cos I love the behind-the scenes.
I remember when I first participated in a school debate, I literally wanted the ground to open up and swallow me. I died of anxiety before I could present my speech. I was shivering madly. Even though I pulled through, I concluded I wasn’t going to ever participate in such competitions anymore. Anyways, that wasn’t all up to me cos fast forward today, I speak publicly!
I was able to grow myself into a more confident public speaker cos I knew I had it in me. I was able to understand that introverts speak too, pretty well. Incase you don’t know, former US President Barack Obama is an introvert. Is he a fantastic public speaker? You know the answer. Need I mention more?
Even though introverts have naturally quiet traits, they can also make great public speakers. They can act out of character and deliver outstanding presentations.
In this post, I’m going to share with you 5 public speaking tips for introverts, that helped my journey. Life is work-in-progress and we’re here to share and learn. Let’s get started shall we? Number 1…
- Practice: I usually made a lot of videos with my phone, speaking. And I’ll watch later and make corrections. You can record yourself with your phone, laptop, iPad, talking about something you’re knowledgeable about. When you’re done, watch your clip and take note of your facial expressions, body language, words, and movements. Keep fine-tuning yourself. You can also use your mirror and imagine yourself speaking to people too. Practice makes perfection right? So Keep practicing.
- Choose a niche (topic) you’re most comfortable with, and knowledgeable about: You can’t invite me to speak on political issues. Even though I might have some knowledge on that, I wouldn’t feel comfortable talking about politics. You need to speak on topics that you can relate yourself and your brand with and that you have message on.
- Prepare: Performance anxiety also known as stage fright gets a grip of even the most experienced public speaker. It’s something we all work on everyday. Have you ever gone suddenly dumb immediately you climb up a podium to face an audience? Scary right? That’s why you need to prepare. It’s important to be mentally prepared so that you can speak well and your audience can understand and relate with your message. If you don’t get what I mean, you should look up tip 1 and 2 again.
- Dress appropriately and be cheerful: You know that saying about looking good and feeling good? And dressing for an occasion? Yea. You need to apply that in any public speaking event. This not only boosts your confidence, but you’ll be addressed better. You have to look the part. You also need to be cheerful and put on a smiling face. You don’t wanna go up there looking like you’re in a fight with someone. You don’t have to sound funny if you’re not funny. Just sound interesting! You are communicating and so you need to have people actually listen to what you have to say. Smiling is affirmative. It helps you relax and fights your anxiety. Taking occasional smiles helps your audience relax and connect better with you.
- Be yourself: Perhaps you’ve probably been watching fiery speakers and now you’re trying to be like them. No you’re trying to Underrate yourself! The best thing you can do for yourself as an aspiring speaker is to own your own voice and let people come to terms with your personality. Everyone’s unique. Now I’m not saying you shouldn’t learn from mentors, no that’s not what I mean. I’m saying, keep your own voice and personality but learn how they have made a niche in that field. Be who you are, don’t trade that.
Introverts are amazing speakers because they’re deep thinkers and feelers. This helps them articulate their message really well and connect that message with their audience. And because most introverts are writers, their outlines and presentations are not only beautifully thought out but artfully written. They do the background work.
Public speaking can be amazing as it presents you the opportunity to showcase your talent. If you’re an introvert and love public speaking, don’t be afraid to go out there, cut a shot and nail it!
Ps: Are you a public speaker or aspiring? Did you find this post useful? Let’s discuss some more in the comment section and don’t forget to share (You don’t know who may really need this) and connect with me too.