Anxious about public speaking?

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Your heart is pounding, your palms are sweating, your cheeks are red and your stomach is in knots. You feel nervous, anxious and fearful about getting up on stage to speak or perform in front of an audience. Sound familiar? Almost everyone gets nervous about public speaking. It is completely natural and nothing you should be embarrassed about.

Your nerves can give you a boost

Being slightly nervous before a public performance can actually be a good thing. It makes you more alert and drives you to do your best. Even if you feel very nervous inside, it rarely shows on the outside.

Frozen by fear? Don’t hesitate to get help

Anxiety becomes a burden when it prevents you from participating in situations such as social events that you would otherwise be interested in, or if your anxiety makes you decide against taking a course that includes a public speaking assignment.

The university offers speech communication courses tailored to the needs of students who feel anxious about public speaking. Students who take these courses will learn to build a perception of themselves as a communicator as well as identify and analyse their performance anxiety. You can also contact the study psychologists who offer groups for students struggling with performance and study related anxieties.

If you feel that social anxiety and the fear of public speaking is restricting your life, contact FSHS to book an appointment with a general practitioner or (counselling) psychologist to discuss the issue and determine the best treatment for it.

Click here for more information and literature on performance anxiety, including how common it is and how to mitigate it (currently not available in English).