Building self-confidence is not always an easy task. At one point or another, every entrepreneur has faced self-doubt before a meeting. Fortunately, it doesn’t take weeks or even hours to boost your confidence before a presentation. Here are four quick and simple ways that will help you realize your inner strength before entering your next big presentation:
Acknowledge and Reframe Your Anxiety
Nervousness or anxiety in certain situations is normal, and giving a presentation is no exception. Before a presentation, you might feel butterflies in your stomach, sweaty hands, trembling, or any other classic anxiety symptom. So how can you reframe those symptoms to help instead of hinder you? Research conducted at Harvard Business School suggested that reframing your anxiety and turning it into excitement could lead to a stronger performance. Try thinking of your client as an old friend. Even if you’ve never met them before, you can trick your brain by thinking, “I’ve known this person forever. I’m excited to catch up with them.”
Practice The First Minute
The first minute is critical to the overall success of the presentation. How you start it all has the potential to completely make or break your meeting. An easy way to build your self-confidence is to focus much of your effort into practicing the first minute. Not only will it give you a strong start, but it will capture your audience’s attention and your confidence will put them at ease.
Strike a Power Pose
This may seem silly at first, but it’s effectiveness has turned it into one of the most commonly used strategies before giving a presentation. There is even a famous TED Talk by Harvard Business School lecturer Amy Cuddy that demonstrates how your body language impacts confidence. To do this, find a quiet area before your presentation. Pose in an open stance, either by holding your hands away from your body or placing them on your hips. Move your legs away from your body and spread your feet apart. Doing this for a few minutes before your presentation can give you a quick confidence boost to help you succeed.
Get There Early
Another common stressor before a presentation is the unknown location. If you’re going to a new location you’ve never been to before, it’s likely that it may be causing some of your apprehension. After you make the appointment, calculate how much time you need to get there and double it. Giving yourself that extra time will resolve any transportation stress or fear of being late and help you focus on building confidence. Not only will you get there early, the additional time will allow you a few extra moments to practice deep breathing and apply other last-minute confidence boosting tricks.
If you find yourself anxious or stressed before a meeting, acknowledge your anxiety, practice the first minute, strike a power pose, and arrive early. Gaining that confidence as an entrepreneur will allow you to discover your limitless potential. By following these tips and tricks, you are on your way to a great presentation!