One of the more famous lines of an even more famous comedian referenced death and public speaking as being two of the more feared elements of a person’s life.
This comedian, who tends to be referenced as the one who did the show about “nothing,” said something in relationship to death and speaking publicly, saying that if you’re at a funeral, you’d be better of being in the “casket then giving the eulogy.”
You have to ask yourself why is public speaking so difficult?
That question might seem simple to those who fear it the most, but to some it is no different than just chatting with another person or holding a simple conversation. People tend to love public speaking or hate it, with very few people saying that they can tolerate it or don’t mind it at all.
Those who are adept at public speaking aren’t necessarily these great, worldly and wonderful speakers per say but rather the adhere to two very simple rules of thumbs that really anyone can get good at and succeed where most fail.
First, they don’t pretend to know the subject but rather they know exactly what the topic at hand and are well versed enough to feel confident when they’re presenting to anyone from a potential investor, their boss or just their colleagues in an attempt to pitch an idea.
Knowing your subject matter is second only to something that we’ve all done in our lifetime, mostly associated with sports, and that is practice.
Practice when it comes to public speaking does make perfect, but this is separate from knowing your topic and understanding it wholeheartedly. The practice part means you write the speech, you know the subject matter, yes, but also have rehearsed the speech. Think of your favorite band and if they practice more than just once before a show. Even the bands that have been doing this for quite some time, the famous ones, have rehearsals before concerts.
Professional athletes also do the same thing, even if they’re at the top of their respective sports.
So why would public speaking be anything different?
In order to feel comfortable, to feel confident when you’re talking to a group, you can’t underestimate the easiest path from nervousness to being competent, smart and sturdy while public speaking.
If you engage in practice and ensure you know to the highest power what you’re talking about, you’ll have no qualms about diving right into that next opportunity to give a speech that is nothing short of sensational.