Most storytellers can remember the first scary time they got up to tell a story. Time and self-confidence makes performance easier, but there are still times when nerves can give rise to a case of the jitters Over the years I've learned some ways to calm myself. Try these the next time you get up to tell a story.
- Know your stuff. Pay special attention to the beginning, main points and end of the story. Practice telling your story in front of a friend and get some constructive feedback.
- Get there early. Don't arrive late and in a panic. If you haven't been there before, check it out on google maps. Check out the parking lots and make sure you have the right building.
- Check out the room. I like to stand up where I will be performing and say something to check the sound. I look around for distractions and I check out any props, tables or chairs that I might be using,
- Check out the crowd. As people arrive, I mingle with them and introduce myself. When the time comes I will be telling to individual friends and not to some big, amorphous group.
- Remember to breath. Before starting the story pause to center yourself and take several deep, slow breaths. This can really relax a person.
- Take your time. Be focused, deliberate and expressive. There is no point rushing through your story.
Let me know what you do to calm those pre-presentation jitters.