If you're like most people, the thought of having to speak on camera likely fills you with dread. But there's no need to be afraid - with a little bit of preparation, anyone can learn to deliver an engaging and compelling performance. I know from my own experience that it takes practice to come to the point where you feel comfortable speaking in front of the camera. We provide dedicated media coaching that will help you to be fully at ease in front of a camera and audience.
Here are some tips to help you get started.
Understand that everyone gets nervous when speaking in front of the camera - even professional actors and actresses
Over the many years I have conducted hundreds of interviews. I have seen total rookies and absolute seasoned veterans in front of the camera. The truth is that even though professional actors and actresses make acting look easy, that is not always the case. Most of the time, these professionals still get nervous when having to speak in front of the camera.
Yes, public speaking can be a daunting task for anyone - even the most seasoned actor or actress - but with practice, nearly anyone can learn how to control their nerves long enough to give an excellent performance in front of a camera or a live audience. The key lies in maintaining focus and calming down, which are skills that can be learned through mild preparation and practice.
Take some deep breaths and relax your body before starting to speak
Most people are impressed about how calm I am in front of an audience or a camera. The truth is that I can bet at times quite nervous. But most of the time this happens only if either the pressure is very high (in case the appearance is very important and the stakes are high), or especially when I’m unprepared (which is rarely the case).
I know very well that when it comes to speaking publicly, nerves can creep up and quickly ruin the moment. Taking a few deep breaths is one of the easiest and quickest ways to get on track with calming down. Concentrate on inhaling slowly through your nose and exhaling deeply through your mouth; this will help your body relax and regain control. Doing this also gives you an opportunity to pause before speaking in order to gather your thoughts, open your posture, smile, and remain confident throughout whatever you need to present or say. Understanding how powerful a few deep breaths can be helps combat public speaking anxiety while preparing yourself mentally and physically for what's next.
Imagine that you're talking to a friend instead of an audience - this will help you feel more comfortable
If you’re feeling nervous when you’re speaking to a crowd, try to pretend as if you’re talking to one person: your friend. Instead of feeling overwhelmed by all the faces in front of you, narrow your scope and dialogue with just this one person. This way, your nerves will start to dissipate and the pressure won’t seem so grand. You can start by imagining how they would react to what you say, or even consider asking them for advice if something arises during the talk. When there are too many people looking at you expectantly, it helps to be able to shift focus from that and put it on someone who knows and supports you. Your friend will know exactly what put said and why - it may not matter much if others don't understand - and it can give you a sense of comfort to have them in mind as you continue through your speech.
Don't try to be perfect - just be yourself, and make mistakes if you need to
Trying to be perfect can be a daunting prospect; it's hard to always achieve standards that are too high. We got used to see perfect performances every day. On TV, Youtube, TikTok and other channels. Yet we tend to forget that these are often either experienced talents or they use heavy video editing, prompters or other helpers to deliver.
Instead of trying to be perfect all the time, strive to simply be yourself. Be unique and embrace your quirks, understand that no one is perfect and mistakes are just a part of life. Mistakes can actually have benefits; they may teach us important lessons or reveal qualities we didn't know we had in order to fix them. Don't needlessly worry about being perfect - use your imperfection as a chance for growth!
Practice, practice, practice! The more you do it, the easier it'll become
Working hard to become proficient in anything is a difficult but worthwhile endeavor. It's easy to give up when things don't become easier overnight, but the key to long-term success is practice, practice, and more practice! Even the most difficult of activities can be broken down into manageable chunks that can be successfully tackled with patience and repetition. The more you put in effort and time to practice, the more natural it will eventually feel. Don't stress yourself out too much though - dedication and passion are crucial elements in achieving success but also make sure you take breaks to rejuvenate during the process. Find inspiration in other people who have managed to gain mastery of a particular activity or skill and use their stories as motivation for your own journey. With hard work and consistency, your efforts will pay off!
Being nervous before speaking on camera is perfectly normal! The best thing you can do is to take some deep breaths and relax your body, then imagine that you're talking to a friend instead of an audience. Don't try to be perfect, just be yourself and make mistakes if you need to. Practice makes perfect, so the more you do it the easier it will become!
I am more than happy to help with my dedicated coaching program. For more information head over to our media coaching-page.