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Feedback Q&A on Public Speaking

by Ron Kurtus

Readers have sent in a total of 374 comments and questions on Public Speaking issues. They are listed according to date.

You can read them to further your understanding of the subject.



List of next 10 letters

Topic

Title

Country

Fear My heart starts to beat fast Sri Lanka
 
General Audience is difficult to communicate to Nigeria
 
Fear Can speak to groups but fears sporting activities RSA
 
General Looking for speaking class for middle school girl USA
 
General Wants credits for public speaking USA
 
Champion I am seeking knowledge in public speaking Norway
 
Fear I forgot some matters completely during talk India
 
Fear Gets nervous when giving a short comment at work USA
 
Fear Giving speech when English is second language USA
 
Fear I am interested in overcoming fear of public speaking USA
 

Next 10

 




First 10 letters


My heart starts to beat fast

Topic: Fear

Question

July 19, 2011

July 19, 2011

Hi,

The matter with me is although i prepared well for my speech or address the group when i got my turn my heart will start to beat fast.Because of my mouth get wet the words are not coming out.So that i can not tell even a sentence clearly and nicely.It reduces my confident.I am afraid and shy to speak up when all looking at me.It makes me sick.I can not talk even when looking at a paper when i am in front of the audience.

Natasha - Sri Lanka

21827

Answer

Being afraid when you are supposed to speak in front of a group is a difficult problem. What can you can do is to try to keep your speech simple, with only three points. Practice your speech by yourself, perhaps in front of a mirror. Then get some friends or family members to be your audience and give the speech to them. Perhaps do it several times to different people.

At this point, you should be well-prepared and even confident about your ability to give the speech.

Realize that the audience in the group want you to do well. Try to get a friend in the audience to sit near the front. Before you begin your speech, look at that person and start to give the speech to your friend. Once you get going, you can start to look at others in the audience.

I hope these idea help. Best wishes in giving great presentations.

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Audience is difficult to communicate to

Topic: General

Question

May 23, 2011

In a situation,while trying to communicate to group of people and they are difficult to communicate to, what will you do?

Dennis - Nigeria

21612

Answer

Some people may be difficult to communicate to because they are not sure what the topic is, they may have problems understanding the material or language used, they may not be able to hear the speaker very well, or they may not be interested in the subject matter.

In making a presentation to a group, you need to make sure those problems are addressed. Tell them what you will be talking about, speak clearly and slowly, and possibly use visual aids, if you can.

See our section on Public Speaking for more ideas.

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Can speak to groups but fears sporting activities

Topic: Fear

Question

May 10, 2011

Fear of public speaking has always been my weakest point. While i was in secondary i never looked forward to presentations. I would always have sleepless nights like you have mentioned, but you have given me ideas that i think will really work for me. I never prepared myself before a presentation. Now im in Varsity and i hope that i will do well. Thanks for your care and support that you give to us.

Having a feeling of not being alone in a situation is very much helpful. I my own experience what i've realised about one fear is that it can lead to another. Like right now i'm afraid to participate in sporting activities, its not because i don't want to, but is bcoz i just can't. so please e-mail to me and give me of your opinions and ideas on how to destroy this thing.

THANX AGAIN!!!!!!

IK - RSA

21562

Answer

I'm glad that our material on public speaking has been helpful to you and that some of our ideas will give you the confidence to be a top notch speaker.

As far as being afraid to participate in sporting activities goes, there are a number of possible fears that people have. Some may be afraid of getting injured in the sport, especially in highly physical activities. Others fear that they will not do well in the sport and may be ridiculed by others for it. This is sometimes called the fear of failure and is the most common fear.

Sporting activities should be fun and not to impress people. However, you still want to perform well enough that you do not look foolish or clumsy.

Just as in public speaking, it is important to practice and rehearse before getting into a game. Whenever the activity, you do need to know the rules and the fundamentals of the game. This can give you an advantage. Watch the good players and see what they do. You can learn a lot about a sport by absorbing what the good players do and how they perform.

Get a friend to practice with. This is the same thing as giving a practice speech to a friend. It allows you to perfect your methods.

I hope these ideas help. Best wishes in speaking to a group and best wishes in doing well in sports.

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Looking for speaking class for middle school girl

Topic: General

Question

May 8, 2011

I am looking for public speaking course for middle school girl in charlotte, NC. She has nice thought process but is shy.

- USA

21556

Answer

My suggestion is to contact one of the nearby Toastmasters Clubs in Charlotte to see if they would be willing to put on a "Speechcraft" in her class. This would be a few sessions and would get everyone involved. Also check with her teacher if they would agree to it.

To find a listing of clubs, check: Toastmasters Clubs in Charlotte. They might also be able to give some suggestions about what is available in your area.

Being able to speak in front of a group is great for the confidence, as well as your daughter's grades.

Best wishes on finding something for her. Let me know how things turn out.

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Wants credits for public speaking

Topic: General

Question

May 7, 2011

Dear Sir/madam,

I have been requested a Public Speech course before I can take my PharmD seats.

Can I take your Succeed in Public Speaking course, and you issue me the credit or certificates to prove I have take this courses?

Your prompt response would be much appreciated.

Best Regards,

Qian - USA

21552

Answer

Our lessons are intended to help you learn various aspects of Public Speaking. We do not give any certificates or credits. You really can't learn the subject online. You need to be giving speeches and presentations to live audiences to learn how to do it effectively.

Public speaking courses may be available in your local adult education or college. Toastmasters is good source to practice, but they also do not give certificates.

Best wishes in achieving your goals.

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I am seeking knowledge in public speaking

Topic: Champion

Question

May 1, 2011

I am seeking knowledge in public speaking and I think I have met the right people that will help me. I need some courses that will earn me a career in life. I currently have an unregistered NGO that has to do with orphans

David Folay - Norway

21536

Answer

Although you can get information about public speaking online, you really need to get in-person experience in speaking to a group.

If you live near Oslo, check out the Oslo Toastmasters Club. They have a great program for improving your speaking abilities. Otherwise, check with your local adult education for possible speaking classes.

Let us know more about your NGO, since we believe in worthy causes.

Best wishes in improving your speaking skills.

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I forgot some matters completely during talk

Topic: Fear

Question

April 5, 2011

I did my preparation well, but i forgot some matters completely during my presentation. How to avoid this type of problems?

Elangai - India

21439

Answer

There is nothing wrong with using notes for giving your speech. You don't want to read it word-for-word, but instead use the notes as a reference in case you forget something.

A good way is to make an outline of your talk. In this way, you can see key words that will remind you of the topic. The outline will also make sure you cover all topics.

If you do forget things, do not worry about it. The audience does not know what you plan to say, so they will not notice anything missing.

Best wishes in your future presentations.

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Gets nervous when giving a short comment at work

Topic: Fear

Question

January 25, 2011

Hello,

I feel like I'm being held back from success because I freeze when I want to get up and speak. I don't know why. I really do not think I will look foolish. As a matter of fact, I feel like what I have to say is very important at times and maybe very helpful to those who would listen. The other day, we went around in a circle and were asked to verbalize our promise and goals that week for my company. If I were the first to answer, I would have been fine. But it's because I had to wait for 4-5 people to go first, that my anxiety level went through the roof. My heart started beating really fast and my lips started shaking. I then, of course, got more nervous because it was clearly visible that I was nervous. It's a viscous cycle! I'm more angry than anything that I can't overcome this. I see it as a huge wall and I don't know how to get over it. I guess my question is, if I feel confident around the people who I am with and not "foolish", then why can't I do this? And why is it that after I am forced to speak, that my anxiety level goes down and then I'm not nervous at all. It's just the beginning. The first 20 seconds (of hell might I add). Any advice?

Nicole - USA

21079

Answer

You aren't the only one that gets nervous when having to wait to say something simple in a group. I used to get much more nervous in that situation than I did when I just had to go up in front of a group to give a speech.

I think what happens is that, while you are waiting, you are repeatedly going over what you plan to say to the group. This just seems to build up the tension.

What might be a good idea -- especially in a business environment -- is to simply write down what you plan to say and then forget about it until it is your turn. You can then listen to what the others have to say.

Then, when it is your turn, take two breaths to put you in control, glance at your note and say what you need to say. You could even read the list you made, verbatim.

I hope this helps. Best wishes in handling the situation.

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Giving speech when English is second language

Topic: Fear

Question

January 21, 2011

what if you don't know that much of English, and you're a second English learner? and you have to present in front of the class?
what to do?

tina - USA

21045

Answer

Write out your speech and have someone check it for correct grammar and wording. Then practice your speech several times, working on pronouncing the words the best you can. It is better to give you speech slowly, trying to make sure your audience can understand you.

There is nothing wrong with giving a disclaimer, such as: "Since English is my second language, please forgive me if I make some mistakes in pronouncing some words."

The audience will appreciate your honesty and not think less of you. In fact, they may pay more attention to your speech than to someone who just rattles off her speech.

Best wishes for success in giving your speech.

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I am interested in overcoming fear of public speaking

Topic: Fear

Question

December 7, 2010

I am interested in getting better with a fear of public speaking, I'm just not sure it is possible. How do I go about getting started?

Thanks.

Anthony - USA

20809

Answer

The best bet is to get involved with a Toastmasters club. They have a good program helps people overcome the fear of speaking, as well as to gain confidence in speaking. Is very effective and membership is inexpensive.

To find a club in your area, check: http://reports.toastmasters.org/findaclub/

There's no obligation to attend if you meetings.

Best wishes on doing well in public speaking.

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