I’ve stood up hundreds of times in front of people to speak. Each event has advanced my progress in some way, but up until very recently I’ve never analysed the psychological science, only the facts and results (I have a LOT of data, albeit stored in my brain and not in any digital format). I’ve developed by iterating my techniques and proving their value.
What interests me now is how the science explains a lot of what I’ve discovered through experience. Here are two great techniques:
It’s easy to imagine yourself failing at something you’re afraid of. The consequence is that you strengthen the association in your subconscious. However, it’s possible to re-wire this connection by visualising your success; it sounds ineffective but it works. Fact.
Fake It to Make It
This is linked to visualisation. Assume the role of the person you want to be, and you can imbue yourself with their qualities. Stand-up comics apply this, and they’re delivering in an exceptionally high pressure speaking situation. They start with some bravado; this puts the audience at ease, and then the comic can relax. You can do the same.
Your subconscious will mess you up if you let it. Show it who’s boss with some positive action!