How To Reduce Nervous Anticipation

I walk ahead of myself in perpetual expectancy of miracles. 

~Anais Nin


My UNCA student’s 3rd speech assignment is due and they’ve claimed their spot in the cue. But, there’s no eye contact, zero smiles, energy is subdued and panic reads on their faces. I ask, “help me understand what goes on for you as you prepare to speak.” The resounding answer is NERVOUS ANTICIPATION.

TALK TIP: Nervous anticipation is an unfavorable future that hasn’t happened, an imaginative reel playing out in your mind that ignites chaos in your nervous system.

Try visualizing this instead:

  • See yourself walking to the front of the room with full confidence & energy.
  • Feel the calm pause before you start.
  • Recognize the benevolence of your audience who are cheering you on.
  • Know you are not seeking perfection. Instead you are making an impact.
  • Repeat!