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It's time to explore building your brand outside of the boundless arena of the virtual world and look at how you can build your brand in the real world. And the best way to do that is using a tool that most people dread, public speaking. Here are three ways to help you improve your public speaking skills.

1. Toastmasters: You've no doubt heard about this organization. There is a nominal fee to join, so it's not free. You will be both a speaker and listener as you practice the art of public speaking and help other members develop their skills as public speakers. The criticism is constructive and meant to help you grow. It is a well-known organization for a reason. It works.

2. Acting Classes: I know. I know. You didn't become an author to advance your career as an actor. Acting may be something that doesn't interest you in the least or it may even terrify you beyond belief. But the point of joining an acting class isn't to start your journey to winning an Oscar. It's for you to get comfortable with "performing." Giving a speech or doing a reading is just that, it's a performance. An acting class can help you own the podium and make your appearance memorable.

3. Improv Classes: Again, I know. Doing improv is most likely not your fondest desire. But thinking on your feet is a crucial tool as a public speaker. Not everything is going to go as planned, so being able to respond gracefully and seamlessly with humor is a key component to giving a successful speech or reading. As the Boy Scouts say, always be prepared. In this case, preparation deals with handling the unexpected.

Public speaking isn't a natural fit for most people. The only real way to succeed at public speaking is to practice public speaking. Doing so in a group with other motivated learners is the best way to master it and overcome your fear.

-Richard Contributors/RidleyHeadshot_blog.jpg

Richard Ridley is an award winning author and paid CreateSpace contributor.

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Jan 4, 2018 8:34 AM walton    says:

I second the Acting Class/Improv route.


For most of my life I did not speak in public, and I don't mean I have the same general fear of public speaking.  When I have had to speak in public, for example, simply giving my name and address during jury empanelment, my voice disappears.  The mouth moves, little to no sound comes out.  I am a musician, and playing on stage has not been a problem at all.


About eight years ago, my wife took acting classes and she got me involved.  Two years later, I've done one two-person play, had the lead in romantic comedy, have had major roles in four other plays.  And, I can speak in public!



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