If you have an event coming up, there's no time to be nervous about it. If you're a little shy or not a great public speaker, that's OK! You can still run a successful event if you prepare yourself well enough beforehand. In fact, by preparing properly and having the right mindset, you'll actually make your presentation seem like second nature when it comes time. Here are some tips on how to run a successful event even if talking to people makes you nervous:
Preparation is key to running a successful event. You need to know what you're going to say, who you are talking to, what the audience is interested in, what your goals are and how best to speak with them.
Before planning an event:
Know what your goal is for the event
How much time do you have? How many people will be there? Are they all friends or family members? Is it a networking event or one focused on education
Who are the other speakers/presenters at this event (if any) and how do they fit into my overall strategy
What do I want people at this event to walk away with – more information about my business/products/services and why should they buy them from me instead of someone else; inspiration for some new project they want to start; useful advice on how they can improve their life by changing certain habits
Visualization is a simple activity that can help you feel more confident in your presentation. At the beginning of each day, close your eyes and imagine yourself as the person you want to be: someone who speaks well and confidently in front of crowds.
Now imagine what it would be like to have a successful event. Picture the venue, the guests enjoying themselves, and so on. Imagine people coming up to tell you how great your event was after it’s over. What do they say? How do they act? Can you hear their voices or not?
Finally, visualize yourself as an introvert who is also a perfectionist—because if there’s one thing that scares me about speaking at events (apart from public speaking itself!), it’s being afraid that I won't live up to my own high standards for perfectionism!
Give yourself a pep talk
If you're nervous about speaking to people, try giving yourself a pep talk. For example, if you're trying to sell tickets at an event:
Look in the mirror and say "I can do this!"
Drive around town and talk to yourself out loud in your car. Keep talking until your nerves go away!
Shower with headphones on while singing loudly (for bonus points, sing Karaoke)
Do it all again when no one is watching; film yourself speaking so that you can watch yourself speak later and see how far you've come since then
Set some goals
No matter what you're trying to achieve, it's important to set some goals. A goal is something that you want, but don't have yet.
For example: "I want to lose 20 pounds in the next three months." Or "I want to read every book on this list by January 1st."
Setting (and sticking with) goals will help guide your decisions about what kind of events you put on and how much time and money you invest in them.
Lean on your network
You can always ask for help. Don't be afraid to turn to your network, even if you're not completely comfortable with reaching out. This is another area where social media can be extremely helpful; searching for hashtags related to the event will likely yield some results from people who have done this before.
Another great way to get advice is by finding someone willing and able to serve as your sponsor. Depending on how formal or informal your event is, having someone who will vouch for you and act as an advocate can be incredibly reassuring when it comes time to talk in front of large groups of people.
If none of these options sound appealing and/or feasible, let's hope that one day soon we'll live in a world where everyone has their own personal cheerleader!
Don't be afraid to take on new challenges
If you're afraid of making mistakes or looking silly, it may be time to take a step back and evaluate why that is. Is it because your self-confidence is low? If so, try some of these strategies:
Don't be afraid to take on new challenges. It's good for you!
Learn to take risks. You'll never know what you can do until you try.
Try something new every day (or at least once a week). This will help build up your confidence in the long run by giving you experience doing things outside of your comfort zone.
Don't forget to breathe
Breathing is something you do naturally, but we often forget to breathe when we're focused on a task. Breathing is a great way to keep calm and stay positive, so remember to take deep breaths before speaking in front of an audience.
Breathe in for four seconds, hold for two seconds and exhale for six seconds.
You can also practice mindfulness or meditate by focusing on how your body feels as you inhale and exhale.
You can do this!
You can do it. You can plan a successful event, even if you’re scared to talk to people. If you want to make an event but worry that no one will show up, don't worry: your fears are completely understandable. But they're also not valid reasons to avoid making an event in the first place. Every time I've made an event and worried about attendance, I’ve had more people show up than expected—and every time I've made an event and worried about how well it would go over with attendees (or how much money could be raised), the donations have been higher than anticipated. The trick is simply getting out there and doing things despite your fear of failure or rejection. You'll be surprised by how much support you get once you start reaching out!
We hope you found this post helpful and that it gave you some inspiration to start planning your next event. If you've never done this before, remember that anyone can do it! Just think about what problems other people have in order to figure out what they need help with. And if all else fails? You can always reach out through social media or email for help getting started.