Making Eye Contact — It’s All How You Look at It!

Date posted: March 21, 2012 | Author: | No Comments »

Categories: Presentation Delivery

by Allan Misch

Often, anxious presenters don’t look at their audiences. They look at their notes, the ceiling, or the back wall. If they do glance at their audiences, it’s usually in a quick scanning pattern.

Actually, looking at your entire audience with a quick scan, or looking at several in the audience at one time increases your public speaking fear, or stage fright. What you see is a bunch of eyes staring at you.

Often the appearance of those eyes are exaggerated. They appear large or even cartoon-like. This can heighten your performance anxiety. So what should you do?

Pick out a friendly face in the front of the audience, make direct eye contact, and talk to him or her for several seconds. When you reach a natural pause, talk to another person directly for several seconds. Work your way around the audience, talking to one person at a time.

Instead of speaking to a sea of eyes, you connect with and give your presentation to one person at a time. Soon, your performance anxiety will lessen, because it’s all how you look at it!

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