A Summary of Anxiety Disorders, Symptoms and Treatment Options

Public Speaking Anxiety

Public speaking anxiety is a common occurrence, especially for people already afflicted with social anxiety. Who knows what could happen on that stage. Your mind might go blank and you end up saying things that may not be considered appropriate. You may end up mispronouncing words and losing face in front of all those people. Your zip may open and you’ll become the laughing stock. You might think it’s just you, but think again.

Let me tell you a secret: even seasoned public speakers still suffer from this occasionally. But unlike those that show physical symptoms of public speaking anxiety, those who can speak to a large crowd of people despite their fear have learned ways to control their nerves.

What exactly happens when a person freezes on the stage? Why does a person refuse to take on the role of a host, even for the sake of the wedding of a friend or a family member? It could be that he imagines all sorts of bad scenarios, like his jokes falling flat or his voice cracking in the middle of his speech. The scenario inside his head may be ten times worse than what really happens in real life.

If you have public speaking anxiety, you’re not alone. The phenomenon called “stage fright” in the performing arts can be related to what you’re feeling when asked to say something to an audience. Instead of a group of friendly faces, you tend to think of the crowd as one entity that’s out to get you the moment you make a mistake. This anxiety is a weakness, of course, but it can be overcome just like all the phobias that people suffer from.

The Role of Past Speaking Experiences

Perhaps you’ve felt humiliated while standing in front of a crowd when you were younger and the memory has haunted you since then. Many public speakers that show promise as beginners end up traumatized after several bad experiences. There are also speakers that have thrived even after their first blunders, and courage had a lot to do with their overcoming the phobia of speaking in public. Once you muster the courage to beat your fear, you can speak in front of people with no trouble.

Nerves Can Be Scary

Anxiety due to the notion of being laughed at, ridiculed or ignore can result in physical illness. Along with the sudden surge of adrenaline comes the instinct to run from a scary situation. If you can’t run or flee, you end up sick. It’s common for people to vomit right before a big speech, which may actually be great for calming nerves.

Speak to a Particular Person

Some people have used the method of visualization to make the feat of speaking a lot easier to handle. They imagine that they’re talking to a bunch of chimpanzees instead of colleagues that can comment or put them down as they please. Replacing a threat with the image of something non-threatening works for most public speakers with this kind of anxiety.

There are other effective methods to learning how to speak in public without anxiety, and you just have to discover what works for you. Others have conquered their fear of public speaking and are now enjoying the confidence that speaking to a crowd gives them.

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