Written by: Emanuela Hall, Executive Contributor
Executive Contributors at Brainz Magazine are handpicked and invited to contribute because of their knowledge and valuable insight within their area of expertise.
In March of 2020, when the world shut down, entrepreneurs everywhere scrambled to pivot. Yoga studios, teachers, and even brick and mortar businesses were suddenly required to have an online presence if they wanted to survive. Two years later and, while much of the world has opened up again, many entrepreneurs are choosing not to go back to the old ways. Not surprising when you consider the incredible reach that a virtual presence can have for businesses.
Algorithms change daily, but one thing is for certain; video content is the fastest way to grow your following, connect with your audience, and increase sales. What do you do if the thought of showing up on video and speaking on camera scares the you-know-what out of you? Sure, you could resist it, make videos without you in them, or focus on other forms of marketing. However, by avoiding video marketing, you’re giving your competitors a clear advantage. How do we overcome those fears of “what will they think”? How do we overcome video fright so that we can let our audience get to know who we really are? Here are some tips to consider, next time you’re avoiding hitting the “record” button:
1. Breathe. Deep, belly breathing to be exact. When we practice this type of breathing for even just a few rounds of breath, our nervous system switches from sympathetic (fight/flight), to parasympathetic (rest/digest). This means that deeper breathing can instantly calm our nervous system, slow the heart rate and focus the mind. Another added benefit to belly breathing is that it supports our voices. It allows us to speak longer sentences, use a resonating tone, and project. 2. You are not alone. According to Psycom.net, glossophobia, or the fear of public speaking, is a “very common phobia and one that is believed to affect up to 75% of the population”. This means that when you’re nervous about speaking on camera you are totally NORMAL. It also means that while 75% of people may have this phobia, they still show up. Fear does not need to define you or keep you from speaking.
3. Be prepared. During my time coaching entrepreneurs to speak online, I often hear, “I don’t want to make notes because I want to be authentic”. The resistance to having, or using, notes is simply another excuse we tell ourselves to keep us from showing up. No one is looking for perfection when you speak ‒ that’s not real. We are looking for someone who knows their material well, even if that means every single point isn’t memorized. If you think that using notes takes away from your authenticity when speaking, I would encourage you to ask yourself if this is truly your belief or something you’re telling yourself to resist showing up. Notes, or no notes, it’s the knowledge of material, and confident delivery that matters.
4. Be of service. There are a lot of people online hoping to grab a few seconds of attention. Therefore, if your only intention for video content is to get something (followers, money, etc), then your voice probably won’t resonate with viewers. If however, you set a clear intention to be of service, to give more than you receive, then the people on the other end of the camera hole will feel like you are talking to them. In fact, this is all anyone really wants when scrolling online; to feel seen and heard.
5. Turn anxiety into adrenaline. Take notice of the physiological symptoms that happen in your body when you feel anxious or nervous about speaking. Likely they’ll include some of the following: an increase in heart rate, shallow and quicker breaths, “butterflies” in the abdomen, or sweaty palms. Next, take stock of the physiological symptoms that appear when you’re excited about something. Probably similar to the ones we listed for nervousness and anxiety. The next time you feel those symptoms bubbling up, try tricking your brain into believing you’re not anxious at all, you are in fact, excited! 6. Detach from the outcome. There are many aspects about being an entrepreneur that is not fun, exciting, or glamorous. We do them anyway because we know they need to get done in order to see the fruits of our labor.
Think of video as one of those things. We don’t have to love it, we don’t have to hate it, we simply have to do it. Sometimes a video goes viral, other times only your aunt Betty sees it. Sometimes your video turns a follower into a customer, most times it takes several videos for that. Regardless of the outcome, stay present, stay focused, do the work, and don’t pay too much attention to the results right away.
7. Be humble. This one always ruffles feathers but, being humble means remembering that, even if you have over a million followers, you’re not that important. Most people will not notice how many “ums” you say, each time you flip your hair, or if you forgot a big piece of your talk. Only you will notice.
According to a study from Microsoft Corp., “people now generally lose concentration after eight seconds”. So spend less time fretting about all those tiny imperfections in your video. Yes, strive to get better, but acknowledge that most people are not paying too close attention, and move on.
When it comes to combating your fear of speaking on camera, repetition is the key. You can learn all the tips and tricks, but unless you put them into practice in your mind and body, they won’t work. Finally, remember that no one is expecting perfection, they simply want to get to know the real you so that they can trust you enough to buy from you.
If you need help overcoming your fear of speaking on camera so that you can attract those dream clients, come join my private Facebook community “Visible Entrepreneurs”, where I host weekly training sessions.
Emanuela Hall, Executive Contributor Brainz Magazine
Emanuela Hall is a holistic speaking and presence coach, an actress, a movement instructor, and the CEO of Creative Wellness (a company that facilitates interactive performing arts workshops to people of all ages). Emanuela is also a homeschooling mama of 2 and, above all, a lover of stories. She believes that creativity matters, that stories unite us, and that everyone's got one to share!
Emanuela found her own story when she struggled with post-partum anxiety and breastfeeding. She turned this experience into her award-winning, one-woman play, My Breast Self. From then on, she became obsessed with helping others to heal, create, and connect through sharing their stories.
Emanuela works with executive leaders, entrepreneurs, and speakers to make a bigger impact by helping them to captivate their audience. She uses body, breath, and voice work to help her clients feel empowered and confident when they speak.
She loves music, food, and dancing on the beach :