How to Get Over Presentation Anxiety: 8 tips

Presentations are one of the necessary evils in life. For some, they come naturally, with others enjoy their moment in the spotlight. For others, the word presentation is enough to send a shiver down their spine.

Even if you hate them and would rather sit quietly in the corner, there will come a time when you have to give a presentation or engage in some form of public speaking. So, it’s important to be prepared and find the right relaxation techniques so the experience isn’t as stressful as you anticipate.

At DEXON, we understand the importance of presentations and view presentations as an important opportunity to flex your public speaking muscles and use technology to create an engaging experience for your audience.

With that in mind, we’ve created this complete guide on overcoming presentation anxiety, so you can face your next presentation confidently and reap the full benefit of public speaking!

Sign up to our newsletter

What is presentation anxiety?

Before we get into the specifics, it’s important that we first understand what we mean by presentation anxiety. Presentation anxiety usually refers to the fear of public speaking. For some, this is merely a simple case of stage fright that they can eventually overcome when they get into the presenting rhythm. Still, for others, presentation anxiety can be debilitating. In severe cases, presentation anxiety can cause panic attacks, physiological symptoms, insomnia, dry mouth, rapid heartbeat, and other anxiety-related illnesses and symptoms.

While severe cases of presentation anxiety tend to be confined to those facing particularly large crowds or those presenting in a high-pressure environment, such as for work or school-related events, we all experience some level of presentation anxiety.

You might experience this in the form of butterflies in your stomach or a fear of looking silly in front of large crowds, but the good news is that you can take constructive steps to make these feelings more manageable.

Why do a lot of us face anxiety issues during presentations?

The reason why we face presentation anxiety will differ from person to person. For some, this will result from a bad experience when presenting that’s left them feeling scared of facing future presentations. For others, this may result from underlying social anxiety that makes confronting new people much harder.

For most people, however, this nervous or scared feeling results from a fear of looking underprepared or unskilled during their presentation. Thankfully, it’s easy to curb this. The more prepared you are, the less anxiety you’re likely to face, as you’ll be confident in the knowledge that you’ve done everything you possibly can to put on an impressive presentation. It’s particularly important to curb this feeling of being scared due to a lack of preparation if facing an audience that will scrutinize you.

For example, suppose you’re conducting a presentation that you’ll be evaluated on at work. In that case, the best way to overcome anxiety is to be knowledgeable and confident in your core material.


How to get over presentation anxiety?

We know that overcoming presentation anxiety isn’t as simple as taking a few deep breaths, so here are eight tips we recommend to give yourself the best chance at putting on an impressive, engaging, and confident presentation.

1. Be organized

One of the most important and effective ways of overcoming presentation anxiety is to be prepared and organized. If you’re unorganized regarding your core material, the supplies you need, or your presentation timings, you’ll likely feel much more stress and anxiety as you’ll have very little direction.

To create a more calm environment when preparing for your presentation, be organized about your technology, core material, speaking points, and presentation cues and timings. This will help you feel a lot more confident in the run-up to your presentation.

2. Practice a lot

It’s important to never underestimate the importance of practicing when it comes to preparation. Practicing allows you to identify areas of your presentation that are weaker than others and rectify this before your presentation in front of a live audience.

This can help you feel more confident as you’ll be more content with your presentation material. With practice, you can also plan how to deliver certain parts of your presentation. This can help you feel more comfortable with audience interaction and confident delivery, leading to a more successful presentation.

Practice a lot

3. Be prepared from the tech side of things as well

When it comes to being prepared, it’s crucial not to neglect the technological side. Securing the correct technology for your presentation can be a long process, so it’s important to plan and understand what technology you will likely need.

For example, suppose you’re using a video wall to present the visual aspects of your presentation. To optimize your presentation, you’ll need the accompanying technology like matrix switchers, video wall processors, and video wall controllers. Having a detailed technology plan allows you to secure this technology quickly, leaving you feeling more prepared and calm. Being prepared regarding technology also refers to having the correct backup equipment on the day of your presentation.

You should consider bringing additional HDMI, VGA, and USB cables, microphones, and speakers to your presentation to account for unexpected errors or missing equipment. Having this equipment to hand will mean you won’t have to scramble at the last minute, leaving you feeling calmer.


4. Make a list of the things you need to cover

If you think your anxiety will likely lead you to forget your core material or cues, then you should make a detailed list of the things you need to cover in your presentation.

Sometimes, when you’re lost in the moment of presenting or very nervous, your mind can go blank, leaving you wondering what your next point is.

A detailed list will help you stay on track and cover all important points. This is especially beneficial if your presentation is likely evaluated by your audience, as you’ll need to provide as much information as possible for a successful delivery.

5. Focus on your material, not your audience

When you’re presenting, one of the best ways to overcome anxiety or fear of scrutiny is to focus on delivering your core material in a way that’s engaging to you, not focusing on your audience.

While considering your audience and including interaction in your presentation is a central part of putting on an engaging presentation, you should try to ignore their presence if it’s likely to interfere with your delivery.

Try to find a focal point at the back of your venue and concentrate on this throughout your presentation, or have your AV team place a spotlight on you throughout your presentation. This will black out a good portion of your audience and stop you from focusing on their faces.

6. Take regular pauses

Speaking clearly is key to holding your audience’s engagement throughout your presentation.

When you’re nervous, you might be more inclined to speak rapidly, meaning it’s much easier for crucial information to get lost. If this is likely to happen, consciously think about including pauses in your sentences.

Having a few seconds of reflection can help you gather your thoughts, calm down, and allow your audience to digest what you’ve said.

Speaking clearly

7. Consider finding help from AV professionals

If you’re anxious about approaching a very large presentation with lots of visual and audio elements by yourself, consider enlisting some help from AV professionals such as integrators that can make the experience more manageable for you.

These professionals can help you find ways of utilizing your technology more effectively and provide you with a single interface to coordinate and operate your AV equipment, helping you feel more confident in your AV elements.

8. Gather feedback

If you struggle with presentations but know you’re likely to face more in the future, consider gathering feedback after your presentation. Reflecting on your performance allows you to identify and celebrate successes and feel more confident in the future. Additionally, you can identify areas to improve, allowing you to work on these and feel more prepared for future presentations.

Sign up to our newsletter

Final thoughts

If you’re looking to secure technology that can transform your presentation into one that you can feel confident in and proud of, consider DEXON’s catalog of processors, switchers, and controllers. We supply a comprehensive range of products designed to take your presentations to the next level. Shop with us today to find out how we can help you.

Newsletter Signup


DEXON Systems

+36 23 422 804
+36 23 445 199

Latest Blog