How to Win a Public Speaking Competition

Engaging in public speaking is one of the best decisions you can make in your life. To win a public speaking competition, you need to work hard and practice as much as you can.

Steps

  1. 1
    At all costs, preserve your principles, originality and independent thinking.
  2. 2
    Be passionate about what you are doing. Never be tempted to start a competition to get attention, fame or status. This is achieved after proper time to reflect on the reasons why you signed up for the competition in the first place.
  3. 3
    Find a mentor. If you are serious about winning, you need to find someone who can coach you. Practicing on your own without feedback is tempting, but a mentor will help you perfect fine details of your delivery and speech content. The mentor may be a tutor or a friend you deem has the ability to coach you.
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    Build your self-confidence. This can be done by reading extensively to master the language you speak. This helps you find the right words for your speech. When you are in front of a crowd, you might naturally get self-conscious about the way you look. That is why you should always make sure you have dressed smart and that you are looking good before going up on stage.
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    Try to find a speech topic which is original and relevant to your audience's lives. The more the audience can identify themselves with your speech, the more attention you will get. You can easily beat the majority of opponents just by the choice of your speech.
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    Read a lot of material eventually and write your speech without over-thinking. The best of speeches are often those which are written in just a couple of minutes. However, you should revise and edit your speech, always thinking in terms of how the audience will respond. You should not use the opportunity to solely show off your personal knowledge and interests. Public speaking is about tailoring your information to please the audience. The audience is pleased when they understand what you are talking about.
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    Humor is important to retain the audience's attention. When they laugh, they listen more attentively because some sort of fun is sensed in your speech. Yet, do not make abuse of humor as it might undermine seriousness.
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    Practice is the most important thing in public speaking. It eliminates stage fright and makes you confident. You can practice in front of a group of friends and tutors. The more you practise, the better. It also allows you to get some feedback. You might then wish to modify certain portions of your speech.
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    Do not get intimidated by your opponents. They will appear confident and deliver good speeches. You might start comparing yourself to them, but that is a mistake. You should forget them completely, and do not try to analyze how well they did.
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    Always stand out through the different phases of the competition by appearing very confident. You should visualize yourself as being very charismatic and it will translate in the way you behave.
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    Maintain eye contact at all times. Look at every single person in the room. People feel secretly flattered when you look at them: they think you intentionally looked at them because they are special in some way. Genuinely try to scan the entire audience with your eyes.
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    Have appropriate body language to accompany your speech and do not be excessive. You should realize that you become the center of attention and people are watching you all the time. You should also not forget to appear physically confident before and after speaking.
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    Speak loudly. A good public speaker must be able to speak without a microphone. This immediately draws attention and it is a sign of your commitment to passing on your message. Most of your opponents will forget this important aspect and the jury might not even hear their speeches properly.
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    # Lastly, remember that life is not about winning or losing one competition. Your preparation is what counts.

Tips

  • You should believe that you are the most interesting and important person and that, it is the audience's loss if they fail to listen to you.
  • If you get uncomfortable making eye contact to strangers, you don't have to look straight in the eye. Looking at their nose or forehead gives the impression that you're making eye contact without suffering from anxiety.

Warnings

  • Rest before your competition and avoid practising too much the day before and the day of your competition. Your voice might get tired and sound really funny. It is not a pleasurable experience.

Article Info

Categories: Public Speaking