How to Overcome Public Speaking Fear

You can overcome public speaking fear and confidently talk with any audience. Overcome means to conquer and/or not let hinder.

You can develop your confidence to such a level, that fear and nervousness will not negatively affect your presentations or keep you from accepting them.
Most people allow the fear of public speaking to hold them back. You don’t have to be one of them.
Here is how to overcome public speaking fear:
First, understand why you have public speaking fear.
Ask yourself, “Why do I fear public speaking?” Make a list of several reasons.
It may be because you are new at speaking. Is there a bad past experience? Are you not sure on how to put together a speech? These reasons can all be easily overcome with some good public speaking training.
Second, get on stage.
Stage time will give you confidence and reduce your public speaking fear and nervousness. Every time you step on the platform, your confidence will build and your fear will be reduced.
Third, research and learn how the pro’s overcame their public speaking fear.
96%+ of speakers have had to learn how to overcome their public speaking fear. By learning public speaking fear conquering techniques you can slash your learning curve and gain confidence quickly.
Many pro’s use a audience focus technique just minutes before they speak. This public speaking fear technique shoves fear aside and brings new confidence and excitement.
Just a few weeks ago I was using this. The result? What little nervousness I had evaporated and I was brimming with confidence. More on this technique in coming posts.
(C) Arlen Busenitz. All Rights Reserved.



Arlen Busenitz

Arlen Busenitz is an experienced speaker with over 650 presentations. He is Author of several books, CD's,and creator of Become a Better Speaker in One Evening™

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When was the last time you listened to a speaker who actually held your attention for almost the entire presentation?

Just five hours ago, I was listening to a speaker who grabbed my attention and held it. Yes, he was good, but it was not because he was using a lot of slick or advanced public speaking tips.

He was using one of the most powerful public speaking formulas a speaker has in his/hers arsenal.

Tell a Story and Make a Point.

Hour after hour, this speaker would tell stories and make points. Sure, he took time to define his content, use quotes, and make some humorous comments. However, he probably had a different story every 5 minutes or so.

After telling a story using effective story telling techniques, he would pause and drive home his point. Next, he would pause to let the point sink in.

Did it work? Yes.

Why is this public speaking tip powerful? Stories automatically hold people’s attention, especially if we use some good story telling techniques. All we have to do as speakers is weave our point into the story or bring it home at the end in a powerful way.

However, we must be careful not to make the mistake that many advertisements make. Do you remember the commercial about cowboys herding cats? How about a more recent one that features a white duck? Here is the million dollar question: what are those stories/scenes representing or selling? I must confess I have no clue about the herding cats commercial and just recently remember what the duck stood for.

We must tie the story and point together so well that if the audience remembers the story, they’ll for sure remember the point.

How can we apply this tip?

  • Use stories throughout our presentations.
  • Tie the story and point together so people remember both.
  • Use effective story telling techniques to help our stories hit home.

(C) Arlen Busenitz – 2011


Arlen Busenitz

Arlen Busenitz is an experienced speaker with over 650 presentations. He is Author of several books, CD's,and creator of Become a Better Speaker in One Evening™

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As a speaker we want to connect with the audience. We want them to feel like we are speaking to each person and having a conversation with them.

How do we connect with the audience? This video will show you one of the best public speaking tips for connecting with the audience.


Feel free to comment!

(C) Arlen Busenitz. All Rights Reserved

Arlen Busenitz

Arlen Busenitz is an experienced speaker with over 650 presentations. He is Author of several books, CD's,and creator of Become a Better Speaker in One Evening™

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In part one I showed you how Joe should prepare as if only one person was in the room. This same concept should apply when speaking.

Speak to one person at a time.
Craig Valentine says, “Speak to one, but look to all.”
You and I should be having 5-10 second conversations with people in the room. We’ll deliver a couple sentences or one thought to the dark haired individual in the front row. Then we deliver the next few lines to the individual in the back row. We keep to doing this with audience members around the room.
What will happen? Members of the audience will feel like we are speaking right to them. Every speaking book and course hammers home the idea of making eye contact for around 5 seconds.
This tip goes well beyond that. You are not just making eye contact, you are having a conversation with that individual.
Do this and you and I will connect with the audience and stand out from most speakers. A lot of speakers will just talk to the room. Have you seen it? They speak to one side of the room and then the other, but their eyes never lock on an individual.
You can be different. Speak to one person at a time and you will connect and create a positive audience experience.
(C) Arlen Busenitz



Arlen Busenitz

Arlen Busenitz is an experienced speaker with over 650 presentations. He is Author of several books, CD's,and creator of Become a Better Speaker in One Evening™

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How to Improve Your Public Speaking Skills Fast


Is there a way to quickly improve our public speaking skills? You and I have heard the standard advice:
=> Be a student in the art of public speaking.
=> Study the great speakers
=> Practice, Practice, Practice
Does it work? Definitely! I’ve seen it my life and in the speakers around me.However, there is a way to rapidly speed up our public speaking skill development?
Yes! I call this secret the "R3 Technique".
R3= Repeat, Review, Record
Imagine that you are giving a 20 minute speech in 7 days.In preparation you want to give your speech and do three things:
1. Record your Speech
Audio recorder is fine, video is better, but not a necessity. You can use a mike into your computer or a even a $20 recorder.
2. Review your Speech
Listen to it and evaluate with two question:
=> What did I do well?
=> What can I improve for next time?
Here is where your study of great speakers and speaking info comes in. You review yourself based on how a great speaker should speak. (We do want to be great, don’t we!) Listen once with an intense review and then listen a second time as you do something else like jogging, driving, or house cleaning. I learned this technique from great musicians. The second time listening somehow has an impact on your subconscious mind.
If you are like me, you’ll cringe! You’ll hear misspoken words and great places for pauses. You are getting real feedback which will help you improve.
3. Repeat the Speech with new Tweaks
You can instantly apply your improvements! This works.


 Here is a great way to apply this with an upcoming speech.
1. Speech given and Recorded
2. Speech Reviewed
3. Updated Speech Given and Recorded
4. Updated Speech Reviewed
5. Final Practice Speech given and Recorded
6. Final Practice Speech given.
7. Give the real speech and Wow the Audience (Record it)
8. Review and make notes for next time.
Does it take work? Yes. Do I do it every time? I should.
Give it a shot and see how the R3 Technique will help you rapidly improve your public speaking skills.
(C) Arlen Busenitz (2009)

Arlen Busenitz

Arlen Busenitz is an experienced speaker with over 650 presentations. He is Author of several books, CD's,and creator of Become a Better Speaker in One Evening™

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The Greatest Public Speaking Secret

“Your final exam will have one question on it.”

As a class we sat stunned at this announcement from our teacher. I was taking a public speaking class at the local community college. Over 12 weeks we had read a 200 page book, given 4 different speeches, and laughed in the face of public speaking fear.

“Take out a sheet of paper.”

Rustling filled the classroom as we each pulled out a sheet of paper.

“Here is the question. What is the Number one Secret to Being a Great Speaker?”

Quickly some of the class wrote down the answer. Others thought and thought.

What would you say? How can a speaker go from boring to interesting? What will wake audiences up instead of putting them to sleep?

Here was the one word answer:


The Dictionary says, “Great excitement for or interest in a subject or cause.”

If the speaker is excited/interested in what they are saying, it will affect their performance and it will excite the audience. This does not mean you have to talk excitedly or run around the stage (though if that is your style, go for it!). The audience should see that you are deeply interested in what you are talking about.

Wait! Not just deeply interested, but excited about it!

What if you don’t feel enthusiastic about what you are talking about? Simple. Apply the old saying, “Act enthusiastic and you will feel enthusiastic.” Put some enthusiasm into your voice. Have vocal variety. Do this and you will fire up the audience.

Here are 3 ways you can add enthusiasm to your presentations:

  • Choose topics you are interested in
  • Lean forward slightly when speaking
  • Act enthusiastic

An enthusiastic speaker can make boring topics interesting!

(C) Arlen Busenitz 2009. All Rights Reserved

Learn to “Make the Audience Laugh”.


Arlen Busenitz

Arlen Busenitz is an experienced speaker with over 650 presentations. He is Author of several books, CD's,and creator of Become a Better Speaker in One Evening™

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How Do I Clear My Sinuses & Speak Clearly

Allergies attacked with a vicious force. My head felt like it was ready to explode. My sinuses were clogged like rush hour traffic in L.A.

Besides the misery it was going to be impossible to deliver my presentation in 12 hours. A Google search for “How do I clear my sinuses” yielded next to nothing.

I turned to Facebook and asked a simple question:

How do I clear my Sinuses?

Within 30 minute 15 friends shared their knowledge.

One idea leaped off the page. I had never heard of it.

Now I call it the 9’th wonder of the world. It is a  powerful secret to clearing sinuses, curing colds, conquering allergies, and helping me speak clearly.

The secret is  the Neti Pot.
Clear your Sinus Infection
Don’t let its simplicity fool you. Even WebMd has an article on using the Neti pot to clear your sinuses.

Here is the four step process that brought me immediate relief and freed my speaking voice.

Step #1: Buy a Neti pot

Every pharmacy and grocery store should have one. You can also go to Amazon and shell out $9 for a sinus clearing Neti Pot. (aff)

Step #2: Mix in some saline solution with warm water

Mine came with about 20 packs of saline. Toss one in the pot with some warm water.

Step #3: Tilt your head and pour in a pot in each nostril and let it flow out the other side

Hard to explain, but pretty easy to do.  Here are pictures on how to use the Neti pot to clear your sinuses.

Yes, it feels weird and you look a little goofy.  However, it works.

Step #4:Enjoy the Clear Sinuses

This works incredibly well. Within minutes my head was clear and I could speak clearly. My presentation went off without a hitch.

Now I use this at the onset of a cold or allergies. If I am feeling a little clogged up before I speak, I’ll run two pots through. Works better than any medicine I’ve used. Much faster too.

This one idea has allowed me to keep my sinuses clear and speak at events that I used to have to cancel or irritate the audience with a clogged up voice. Be brave. Try it.

What other ideas do you have for clearing sinuses?

Arlen Busenitz

Arlen Busenitz is an experienced speaker with over 650 presentations. He is Author of several books, CD's,and creator of Become a Better Speaker in One Evening™

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Public Speaking Pauses and a Sleeping Baby

It was my night to baby sit. My three month old daughter lay on the couch next to me sleeping.  Sitting in front of me was the laptop playing a public speaking training video.

To my daughter the voice from the video was a like gentle ocean waves verbally rocking her to sleep.

After 30 minutes I decided to grab a drink of water. Careful to not wake the sleeping princess, I pushed pause on the laptop.

My daughter awoke with a start. She looked around and gave a nice three point speech as to why she did not enjoy being awakened.

The pause or silence startled her and she awoke. That is the power of the pause and the end of a quiet evening.

You can use the pause to keep your audience wake and to wake them out of a glassy eye.  It’s a speaker induced coma.

Patricia Fripp said,

Perfect your pause. Deliver your punch word and then pause…and pause…and pause. Give your listeners time to digest what you’ve just said. Get comfortable with silence, and don’t be tempted to rush on or fill it with “um’s.”

Good speech coaches recommend and use the power of the pause. Insert many pauses into your presentation. Not only do they help your content sink home, but they are much appreciated mini breaks to the sound of our droning voice.

A moment of silence woke the baby up. Public speaking pauses will help you keep your audience awake.

Arlen Busenitz

Arlen Busenitz is an experienced speaker with over 650 presentations. He is Author of several books, CD's,and creator of Become a Better Speaker in One Evening™

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Last week I spoke to a group of junior-highers twice a day for five days.

As you know, junior-highers have a short attention span. A distraction or three sentences of boring content can cause the attention to be diverted away from the speaker.

The great thing about kids this age is that we know if we have attention and if we have lost it. Adults may be polite and still pretend to listen, but kids often let you know through body language when they are no longer paying attention.

To make this situation more challenging, I spoke in an open air building with a roof and open sides. Bugs buzzing, heat simmering, and tired campers all led to a greater challenge to hold attention.

To keep attention with this kind of audience and any audience, I seek to use the 7 speaking tips below.

Tip #1: Tell a Story, Make a Point

Have you noticed the following.  A speaker is droning on and on, but then says, “5 years ago I was walking behind my house…” Attention gets snapped back.

Stories, even poorly told stories, hold attention and quickly grab attention.

In addition to giving a healthy dose of stories, I keep some in reserve. I may need to tap into them when attention wanes.

Keep the stories coming and the attention will stay glued to you.

Tip #2: Tell a Story, Make a Point

I heard one speaker mesmerize the audience with dozens of personal stories. Later, I turned to my brother-in-law and asked, “What was the point?”

Where was the life changing content? Where were the tips or truth that we could hang our hat on and improve our life?

There were none.

Have a main point with every story. You may make the point and then tell the story. Or you may tell the story and then make the point. Just have a point.

A couple examples from this week:

– Story about nearly failing 7’th grade in school.

– Point: Stop blaming, start changing.

– Story about starting my rock business and nearly quitting.

– Point: Keep on Driving

Tell stories and add points.

Tip #3: Tell a Story, Make a Point

Outlines. Our English teachers railed on the importance of having an outline. Speech coaches do the same.

I push the Speech Tree™ in Become a Better Speaker in One Evening.  It allows people to quickly create speeches.

However, just throwing main points out is like tossing  your coat against the wall and expecting it to stay there. It won’t. It’ll slide right down and the points will zip past the audience with next to zero retention.

If we package the point with a story, that story acts like a hook. The points are retained and remembered.

Tip #4: Tell a Story, Make a Point

Great speakers use this formula.

Jesus used it with His parables. Mark Twaine used it. Bill Gove, the father of Professional Speaking, popularized the phrase.

My father always told me, “Find out what works and do it.” This formula works. Use it.

Tip #5: Tell a Story, Make a Point

Do these stories have to be complex? Nope.

Patricia Fripp said, “It is better to tell a simple story well, than a complex story poorly.”

Write down a past experience from your life every day for a month. Now you have 30 stories.

Tip #6: Tell a Story, Make a Point

Many speakers bury their head in their notes and rarely come up for air. By telling stories, especially personal ones, you can easily tell them from memory.

On your little note card just list:


You can look like a pro and use minimal notes.

Tip #7: Tell a Story, Make a Point

Stories stick in our minds like a glue trap to cat’s fur (I know from experience). If the point is properly attached to the story, the point will stick also.

I still remember stories speakers shared from ten years ago. Many of the points are still stuck in my mind.

You can become a speaker who holds attention and has a sticky message. Learn more by reading Made to Stick.

Let’s wrap this up.

Many audiences have short attention spans. You can hold attention and communicate effectively by using these 7 tips and telling a story  and making a point.

Arlen Busenitz

Arlen Busenitz is an experienced speaker with over 650 presentations. He is Author of several books, CD's,and creator of Become a Better Speaker in One Evening™

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Stand up. Speak up. Sit down.

The essence of public speaking summed up in six words.

This advice came from a international speaker who gave thousands of presentations across the U.S. and around the world. He spoke with confidence, delivered with enthusiasm, and was a popular speaker.

Amateurs apply two or four of these words. Amazing speakers use all six.

Stand Up

75+ percent of people fear public speaking. 3 out of 4 people listen to fear and would rather sit in the chair than speak to an audience.  The solution? Stand up.

Public speaking is like leaping into a cold pool  of water on a hot day. When you first step in, there is a shock to the system. Keep floundering around (if you don’t know how to swim) and within a couple minutes it will feel better.

Choose action and refuse to listen to fearful thinking and feelings.

In my public speaking classes and in Speak with Confidence, I teach how to stand up with confidence. When a person has great posture and does three other things, they will instantly reduce their fear and speak with confidence.

Many people have a story or a message that can influence and help many people. Fear is keeping them entrapped. Are you of them?

Take the first step. Stand up. Deliver your message.

 Speak Up

When I heard this phrase, I thought of  my 89 year old great-aunt with $5,000 hearing aids. Those hearing aids seemed to work like ear plugs.  Wonderful aunt but technology seemed to fail her as we still had to shout.

That’s not entirely what this international speaker ment.

It means to speak with enthusiasm. Put fire into your presentation. Speak with energy.

Too many speakers are like a lethargic team of overpaid sports players on a losing team with nothing to play for.

Act enthusiastic and you will feel enthusiastic. Put energy into your voice and body language and you will create energy in the room.

Enthusiasm is contagious. Your audience will get the fever and respond.

Here is one simple tip. Lean forward slightly when you speak. You’ll be amazed at how this subtle change will impact the energy level.

This is covered more in depth in Become a Better Speaker in One Evening.

Sit Down

“End early and leave your audience begging for more.”

Its better to end 5 minutes too early than 5 minutes too late.

People despise planes that circle the airport for extra time waiting to land. Speakers who go overtime are similarly irritating.

Unless you are very popular, have tremendous content, or are paying your audience by the minute, your audience will not appreciate you going over time.

Here are a few tips:

  • Speak 10% shorter than you are asked. If you are to give a 10 minute presentation, speak 9 minutes. (Unless you have to keep a meeting on schedule.)
  • Open hot, close hotter. Have an excellent conclusion to wrap up the speech. Leave them on a high.
  • Be prepared to cut content from your speech. It is inevitable that others will refuse to sit down and your time will be cut short. Reward the audience and cut your time down. They’ll thank you for it.
  • Watch the audience. They will tell you when they are bored. Change things up or cut content if need be.

One of my mentors told me, “Arlen, if you want to be successful, get back to the basics and do them well.” In public speaking these include:

Stand Up, Speak Up, Sit Down.

Arlen Busenitz

Arlen Busenitz is an experienced speaker with over 650 presentations. He is Author of several books, CD's,and creator of Become a Better Speaker in One Evening™

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