1 fear reported by people in the U.S.". "The idea of making a presentation in public is the No. "It is even scarier than rattlesnakes," Witt ls WebMD.
Instead, he teaches public speaking skills. Witt doesn't try to motivate people. Before speaking:.
We can deal with that. The important thing is it does not have to make us embarrassed or frightened or upset to speak in front of other people. "Virtually every speaker gets nervous most of the time, or at least some of the time," Witt says. "We all deal with our nervousness in different ways. You may be nervous, but you don't have to be disabled in front of other people.".
What are your fears?
Here's the bad news. If you are a person with high-trait anxiety, there's no simple way to become a low-trait-anxiety person. You cannot change your traits. They are part of your personality.
Anxiety strikes any time we present our ideas in front of other people. And it's not just making a speech.
"Those symptoms that distract us are treatable," Witt says. "It doesn't take a PhD to figure this out, but so many people don't -- because as sensitizers, they become so focused on their symptoms and their embarrassment in front of other people.".
To nobody's surprise, people who are anxious by nature -- what psychologists call high-trait anxiety -- had the most symptoms when speaking in public.
Even when their speech is over, sensitizers don't relax. In fact, they become even more anxious.
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Speech Anxiety Worse for Some, but Most Can Overcome It.
The good news is that we can learn to win with the cards we are dealt. High-trait anxiety is a challenge. It need not be a disability.
During your speech, deal with symptoms as they occur:
"Sensitizers are those who really focus on the unpleasant indicators: 'Oh my gosh, I have to make this speech. They are really into the experience but react in negative ways, whereas habituaters are really into the experience and react in a more accommodating way.". Oh my Lord, my hands are trembling.' And they focus on these things instead of taking a deep breath or becoming more focused.
The study shows that those who suffer most over speaking in public get more anxious -- not less anxious -- as their presentation gets under way. And when it's over, instead of feeling relief, they feel even more anxious.
The speakers underwent a battery of psychological tests before and after making a five-minute assigned presentation. Witt and colleagues studied 48 male and 48 female college students enrolled in a beginning public speaking class. The tests included a self-report inventory of gastrointestinal symptoms.
Habituaters are usually low-trait anxiety people. People with high-trait anxiety, Witt says, tend to be "sensitizers.".
See additional information. WebMD does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.
April 20, 2006 -- Fear of public speaking strikes some people harder -- and differently -- than others, according to a new study.
Witt recommends counseling for people who have violent symptoms such as vomiting. There are, of course, psychological problems that require more than visualization and practice. But for the rest of us -- who fear that everyone in the room can see our palms sweat -- it's a matter of gaining confidence by learning a set of simple skills.
I even wished I had more time,'" Witt says. "What happens is we have habituated -- we have gotten used to the context of public speaking.". "We hear this comment a lot from speakers: 'I was so nervous when I started but by the time I finished it wasn't so bad.
"Anytime people make verbal remarks that need to be clear and persuasive, we find widespread reports of stage fright and nervousness," Witt says.
Do you know how stress affects your health?
Witt's study appears in the March issue of Southern Communication Journal.
Pagination. Witt, PhD, assistant professor of communication studies, Texas Christian University, Fort Worth. SOURCES: Witt, P.L. Southern Communication Journal, March 2006; vol 71: pp 87-100. Paul L.
Getting a little keyed up may help us focus and pay better attention. It happens to almost everybody who gets ready to make a presentation, Witt and colleagues find. That's not necessarily a bad thing.
If speaking in public scares you, you aren't alone, says Paul L. Witt, PhD, assistant professor of communication studies at Texas Christian University, Fort Worth.
People with low-trait anxiety get nervous before speaking but begin to relax once they get started. People with high-trait anxiety, however, are anxious when they start speaking and get more anxious as they go on. What was surprising was the anxiety pattern.Ativan for public speaking anxiety