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How to do a good oral presentation in 12 steps

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Speaking in front of a wide audience can be a daunting task and a source of anxiety even days before carrying it out.

For many people, the simple idea of ​​exposing themselves (themselves and their communication skills) to so many people is a terrible idea, which makes that tremors and indecision when speaking take over one's own body.

However, everything can be improved by learning, and the same applies to the ability to give a good oral presentation. That is why below you can read a series of keys based on psychological principles that will help you to present your speech in the best possible way after using them several times.

Learning to speak in public in the best way

The first thing to be clear about is that improving our ability to give an oral presentation is a process that takes days and weeks.

Being aware of this is important so you don't get frustrated in the early stages. Second, keeping that in mind means making a commitment not to avoid the kinds of situations in which you should speak in public and taking advantage of them to practice.

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1. Have at least a week in advance

Ideally, to prepare a 45-10 minute oral presentation is to spend at least an hour a day preparing it for the week before, if not earlier. It is very important to spread the preparation over several days instead of using almost the entire day before preparing it; not only because that way you can get more time to dedicate in case of unforeseen eventsBut because knowing that you have many days in advance exerts a psychological effect of relative calm and security on yourself.

That is, during the first hours we will not feel so much anxiety if we notice that it is difficult for us to progress, and this will make learning more fluid. When we reach the last days, which is the stage in which nerves emerge the most, we will do so knowing that we have already traveled a long way, and this will allow us to be productive without stress it means a loss of motivation, effort and attention in what we do.

2. Well documented

Before creating the script of what we want to talk about, we must be clear that we know what we are talking about and that our knowledge has no gaps.

For this, we can help ourselves with a graphic representation that will allow us to know the degree of depth with which we know the subject well. To do this, in the center of a sheet we write a series of items or keywords that we consider the most important topics of the presentation. Then, we are drawing a series of concentric circles around them, and we are writing other secondary themes in them, around what was previously written.

In this way we will have an overview of the topics to be covered and the importance of each one in the oral presentation. We can start by learning about the essential topics, to gradually document those that are secondary or accessory.

In the last circle we can write topics that we think are somewhat related to what we are going to talk about but what we do not have to know for the presentation. In this way we will be prevented and, if in question time someone names them, we can have a ready answer in which we indicate in which books or sources the person who wants to know more about it can be documented.

3. Be clear about the main idea we want to convey

Oral presentations are more attractive if throughout their development there is an idea that underpins all the subsections into which we divide the talk. This idea doesn't have to be something of a moral; For example, if the presentation consists of explaining how we have carried out our thesis, the main idea will simply be the thesis itself.

The important thing is not to deviate from the topic and express directly what it consists of during the first 2 or 3 minutes of the oral presentation. In this way, the backbone of the talk will be clear and the audience will know how to contextualize what we say in the correct way and without being confused by possible digressions.

4. Prepare the introduction first

Before thinking about the structure that the talk should have, it is better if we first raise the first minutes of it, as much in detail as we can. In this way, We will have focused on the subject and it will be very easy for us to think about the sections of the talk and in the order they should follow.

The objective we pursue when creating the introduction is to attract the attention of the audience while raising the topic of the oral presentation. That is why you have to avoid very technical introductions or those that pull from dictionary definitions. It is much better to start with a leading question or a short story.

5. Devise the structure of the talk

In this step we will write several ordered titles that express in the most direct way possible which sub-topic will be covered in each section of the talk. These topics will be reflected in a detailed script about what we want to say, and at the beginning We will work on each of them separately and in an orderly manner, from the closest at the beginning to the end.

This is a phase of the planning process of the oral presentation that takes on special importance if what we want to communicate is relatively complex and must be approached at through different sub-sections, so spend all the time you need on it, since the difference between a clear message and another that is not depends largely on the structure.

6. Linking subsections

This step is very simple, because it simply consists of making the different sections of the oral presentation refer to previous or later ones. In this way the audience will better understand what we are talking about, seeing it as a whole in which the pieces are related to each other: "as we saw before ..." "we will see this next ...", etc.

In short, knowing how to make a good oral presentation is knowing how to create a coherent speech that has its own entity, instead of being a sum of parts.

7. Checking for possible gaps and leftover parts

In this step we will compare what we have written with the graphic representation in which we ordered the topics according to their importance, and we will see if the extension of each subsection and each line referring to these topics corresponds to that ordering. In this way We will see if we have to talk more time about certain things and less about others, and we can modify the script based on this.

This stage allows us to have an overview of what has been written and detect errors that a more focused point of view did not allow us to detect.

8. Read out loud

This step can be the most boring, because it only consists of reading aloud what is written several times. It is advisable to read it all at once, but it is also advisable to think about each of the sub-sections and read only the part corresponding to it.

In this way we will link each topic to be dealt with with certain phrases and with a certain way of spinning the discourse. It is important to know, however, that the goal is not to memorize the text by making efforts to make each word engrave in our head; the goal is that our brain gets used to learning the ordering, not the exact content.

Knowing in what order the sub-sections go and the different simple ideas that are included within these helps us to better remember what we are going to say and to express it more naturally, without being afraid of not remembering exactly how a certain part was written. Each topic to talk about acts as a clue as to which one is next.

However, and although it seems silly, it is also very important to read aloud, to hear ourselves speaking. In this way, our own voice will also be an element that will make the memory of the script richer and more complete.

9. Get a good rest the day before

We must get to the day before the exhibition knowing the script well. In this way, we will only take time to review, and we can rest so that our body recovers and relaxes a little. Also, it is very important to go to bed early to get enough sleep. Preparing well for an oral presentation is also knowing how to manage time to regain strength.

10. Following a sequence of steps

When giving the talk in public, we must concentrate on saying what we are supposed to say at the stage of the talk we are in, and concentrate our full attention on it. That means we must forget to try to remember at all times the general script of the oral presentation; That option would only distract us and generate anxiety, since our focus of attention cannot be everywhere at once.

11. Know how to look at the public

It is important to face the audience during the oral presentation, which does not mean looking at the audience. Our attention should be focused on our speech and what we are saying at that very moment, and little else. To help make this happen, a good help is to pretend that the people in the audience are dolls, or in any case, the audience of a very realistic video game. Although it sounds a bit bad, the idea is to depersonalize the public as the psychopaths they objectify other people; in this case, think that they are not real people but something like components of a simulation.

This will help us so that the nerves are not so intense. Later, when we master the art of public speaking, we can skip this step.

12. Learn to live with your nerves

The last step is to embrace the idea that a little bit of nerves is no problem. When we are nervous we think that our tremors and stutters are very noticeable, but the truth is that it is not like that, the distance of the audience and the clarity of our message make these little signals of nervousness automatically overlooked, because all the public's attention is much more focused on the content of what we say (what they want to understand) than how we say it.

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