Speaking Up without Freaking Out: 50 Techniques for Confident and Compelling Presenting
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50 Scientifically-Supported Techniques to Create More Confident and Compelling Speakers
Speaking Up without Freaking Out by Matt Abrahams is an easy-to-read book containing over 50 anxiety management techniques that are based on scientifically supported theory and evidence that will help you become a more confident and compelling communicator regardless of where you present -- on stage, in a meeting or virtually.
Confident and compelling presenting involves a complicated mix of physiological and psychological factors. In the 3rd edition, this book provides specific guidance and opportunities to practice developing the skills you will need to feel more comfortable speaking in front of others in an engaging way.
This book is divided into seven chapters:
Chapter 1 describes speaking anxiety, how it shows itself, its negative effects, and how you can appear less nervous.
Chapter 2 describes the main theories about why people feel anxious when speaking and, importantly, offers you several specific techniques to reduce speaking anxiety and bolster your confidence.
Chapter 3 details how you can use your nonverbal presence and voice to not only appear more confident, but also feel more confident.
Chapter 4 how focusing on your audience’s needs and connecting your content to them can reduce your anxiety and make your presentations more compelling.
Chapter 5 provides techniques and guidance on how to structure your presentations to better help you and your audience remember what you present.
Chapter 6 teaches how to resist and stop some self-defeating beliefs and behaviors that perpetuate and exacerbate anxiety.
Chapter 7 addresses how to put all this information to work for you by creating your own Anxiety-Management Plan.
A glossary is included that will explain the more technical, scientific terms found in the book, along four appendixes
Appendix A suggests techniques for managing anxiety that comes from audiences not immediately present for your speech (e.g., conference calls and web presentations).
Appendix B gives additional suggestions for those who are not native English speakers.
Appendix C addresses how to feel confident during a question and answer session, while providing clear and concise answers.
Appendix D discusses two specific techniques/approaches to motivating and persuading your audience.
How to Use This Book
Chapter 1 Confidence: Explanation and Manifestations
Chapter 2 Anxiety Sources and Solutions
Chapter 3 Presenting Confidently
Chapter 4 Audience Focus and Connection
Chapter 5 Structure and Story
Chapter 6 Behaviors to Avoid
Chapter 7 Putting It All Together
Appendix A: The Audience Beyond the Room
Appendix B: Anxiety Management for Non-native Speakers
Appendix C: Commanding the Room with Confidence during Q&A
Appendix D: Framing and Action Forces: Effective Persuasive Practices
Appendix E: Anxiety-Management Techniques
About the Author
Matt received his undergraduate degree in psychology from Stanford; his graduate degree in communication studies from UC Davis; and his secondary education teaching credential from SFSU. He is currently a member of the Management Communication Association (where he recently received a "Rising Star" award) as well as the National and Western States Communication Associations. Additionally, Matt developed a software package that provides instant, proscriptive feedback to presenters. Prior to teaching, Matt held senior leadership positions in several leading software companies, where he created and ran global training and development organizations.
Matt is also Co-Founder and Principal at Bold Echo Communications Solutions, a presentation and communication skills company based in Silicon Valley that helps people improve their presentation skills. Matt has worked with executives to help prepare and present keynote addresses and IPO road shows, conduct media interviews, and deliver TED talks.