I’ve overcome my fears of facing the media over the years. It was a real challenge, but now I can confidently tackle various media platforms. From giving lectures to students, public speaking at seminars and conferences, making keynote speeches, being a panelist or even a panel moderator, going live on radio and TV, hosting webinars, creating videos on YouTube or TikTok, and going live on Facebook—I’ve done it all!
It wasn’t an overnight process, though. It took me a good number of years, actually more than 20 to 30 years, starting from my early days of employment, to lessen the jitters I felt when facing crowds and the media.
Overcoming Media Fears: My Tips
- Knowledge is Confidence: Being knowledgeable about the topic is crucial. The more you know, the more confident you’ll feel when speaking about it.
- Practice, Practice, Practice: Rehearse your speeches or presentations extensively. The more you practice, the more comfortable you become with the material, refining your delivery and controlling your nerves.
- Arrive Early and Mingle: Ease your nervousness by arriving early and mingling with the audience or other speakers. It helps build connections and creates a more relaxed atmosphere.
- Prepared Answers for Panels: Have written answers prepared for panel sessions. They serve as a helpful reference when faced with challenging questions.
- Relate to Your Expertise: Find connections to your expertise when encountering unfamiliar topics. This allows you to provide valuable insights while staying within your comfort zone.
- Honesty Beats Guesswork: If you don’t know the answer to a question, it’s better to admit it honestly. Offer to look into it and provide a well-informed response later.
- Inject Humor Appropriately: Adding humor lightens the atmosphere and engages the audience. Ensure it is relevant and suitable for the occasion.
- Link Topics Mentally, Not Read Slides: Instead of reading slides verbatim, mentally link the topics together for a more natural flow during the presentation.
- Clear and Concise Communication: Avoid mumbling or speaking too fast. Articulate your words clearly and explain complex ideas in simple terms to connect effectively with your audience.
These tips have helped me overcome my fears and excel in facing the media. What about you? Do you have any strategies or techniques that have worked for you? Share your thoughts!