Speaking to college students can be a very rewarding opportunity where you are allowed to inspire and motivate students to do great things. As many colleges continue to create forward thinking programs that help to educate their students to give them an edge in business and life, they are also looking to get a college speaker who can share their valuable knowledge with them to help them get a better understanding of how to build their career and create a meaningful life.
Developing Your Skills
If you have ever been asked to speak to college students, you may have quivered at the idea. However, with a little practice, the truth is that anyone can do it. Public speaking is a fantastic skill to have. It also terrifies people, so they avoid it at all costs.
It would stand to reason that it is hard to cultivate a skill that you don’t have the opportunity to practice. So it’s something you just have to get out there and do it. Here are some simple tips you can follow to prepare yourself:
1. Get pumped up before you give your speech
No doubt you are a bundle of nerves, so harness that energy and turn “oh no…” into “I can’t wait!” Both fear and excitement give you kind of a rush; this is just a matter of reframing it.
“The truth is that excitement and anxiety are basically the same energy” says Chris Adams of Motivation Ping. “I always recommend that people use positive affirmations or motivational quotes to get them to direct that energy in a more positive way.”
2. Smile at yourself in the mirror beforehand
You may be so tense that you are forgetting even how to smile. Putting a smile on your face and seeing it reflected back at you is an affirmation. Even if you feel panicked on the inside, smiling will help you feel more at ease, and in the meantime you’ll be projecting confidence to your audience. So as you take a few moments in the rest room to primp, shoot yourself a big grin.
3. Don’t hide behind the podium
It certainly feels more secure behind it, but there is something to be said for standing directly in front of your audience. This makes you look more poised, and you won’t be tempted to lean on anything. You can have a little more space to move around. Good body language here is key. Use open body language, standing tall with your shoulders back. Nobody needs to know you just wish it were over! I like to think of it as owning the bubble of space around me. I am the focal point. My nerves make me want to cross my arms, look down a lot, and stand behind heavy furniture. I remind myself to not sound or appear apologetic to be there or be speaking. Owning the space around you also includes speaking loud enough to be heard, not rushing, and allowing yourself to breathe occasionally!
4. Wear something that makes you feel attractive
This may not be a public speaking technique, but if you don’t feel comfortable with the image you’re presenting, it will be a distraction to you. Maybe you need to treat yourself to something new to get yourself through your speech. When you feel confident and attractive, you will welcome the opportunity to be in the spotlight.