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Presentation Tips for Introverts: Conserving Energy

Introversion isn’t the same as being shy.

With enough preparation and focus, introverts are just as capable of being on stage as their more outgoing counterparts.

Though being in the spotlight isn’t something they enjoy, it’s something they can excel at given the right time.

It can also be draining to talk to a lot of people, so pace is important to keep things running smoothly.

Your confidence will naturally grow as you master your topic.

In addition, these presentation tips for introverts can help you further in your preparation.

Conserve Energy

While extroverts draw energy from social interactions, introverts draw their energy from within.

Pacing is crucial to avoid wasting energy while presenting.

If possible, craft a short speech to avoid running out of strength.

A shorter presentation also means that you’ll have more energy to expend engaging with your audience.

Prepare your deck thoroughly so you don’t fumble through your speech and lose your precious energy reserves.

Potential Power

Introverts are good listeners, but they can be good speakers as well.

Here are more reasons why introverts can be excellent public speakers too.

Overstimulation of their senses may cause them to withdraw in social situations.

Thankfully, speeches aren’t completely spontaneous and are conducted in an organized space.

Introverts can devote their time and energy to ensure an outstanding presentation, rather than rely on their personality to wow audiences.

Allocate Time

Use your strengths to conquer your weaknesses and you‘ll be a better presenter with practice.

Devote some time to figure out how you can improve the way you speak and how you structure your topic.

The focus should be on the message you’re trying to convey and not on you.

This kind of mindset takes pressure off of you, which allows you to focus on your content and delivery.

Pretending to be confident will work to your disadvantage because you’ll have to spend more energy trying to sustain this behavior.

Your energy is better spent elsewhere, and the time you spend working on your strengths will give you more room for growth.

Energy = Power x Time

Proper pacing should make delivering a speech look a lot less frightening.

Even if they feel up for to the task, introverts have the right skills to be in front of a crowd.

But they have a limited amount of energy to spend and need to manage it carefully.

Impress your audience through a message with a strong impact to alleviate the pressure to over-deliver.

Some presentation tips suggest faking confidence, but it’s much better to spend time building up your strengths.

With this, you’ll be true to yourself and the message you’re trying to get across through your deck.

Remember: introversion should never be an excuse for a subpar performance.

 

References

Cain, Susan. “Public Speaking for Introverts: 6 Essential Tips.” Duarte. February 1, 2013. Accessed October 23, 2015. www.duarte.com/blog/public-speaking-for-introverts-6-essential-tips
Cherry, Kendra. “What Is Introversion?” About.com. Accessed October 23, 2015. http://psychology.about.com/od/trait-theories-personality/f/introversion.htm

Featured Image: “Shy statue.” by fredrik Andreasson on flickr.com

A Short Presentation Guide for Introverts

Presentations can pose more than the usual challenge for introverts. After all the preparation, an introvert presenter also has to worry about facing a large group of people.

It’s commonly believed that most introverts aren’t particularly inclined to group situations. However, it doesn’t automatically mean that introverts can’t handle pitching to a crowd. Best-selling author Susan Cain is a perfect example.

Unlike their counterparts, introverts are better with intrapersonal or “inward-turning” activities.

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An introvert will have little difficulty preparing the basic aspects of his presentation, like content and design. The real challenge is learning to be comfortable in front of a crowd and making sure all ideas are properly shared with the audience.

If you’re among the millions of people who identify as introverts, here’s a presentation guide that will help you command your presence in front of an audience:

Learn what you can about the audience

You might be better prepared to face a large crowd if you have enough information about them beforehand.

Because introverts are said to be better attuned to the needs of others, knowing that your presentation is exactly what the audience is expecting may put you at ease.

Of course, to get to that point, do some research first.

Learn what you can about the audience so you can tailor your presentation closer towards their expectations. In particular, answer these questions to identify the approach you need to take.

Don’t skimp on practice 

There’s no other way to feel comfortable about presenting than by practicing your skills.

It will take a little bit more time, but it can go a long way in making sure that your presentation is properly delivered and executed.

Even with a tight schedule, you can still set aside some time to practice your presentation bit by bit.

Practice how you want to say each part of your presentation, as well as how you plan to use your body language to emphasize your points.

Continue practicing after everything so that you’re ready when the next presentation opportunity heads your way.

Embrace your anxiety 

It doesn’t matter whether you’re an introvert or an extrovert, feeling nervous about a big presentation is completely normal.

Not everyone will feel fully confident about any task if there’s a lot of pressure to perform properly. The harder you try to ignore your anxiety, the more your discomfort will be evident to the audience. All you can do is accept how you feel and work to make sure it doesn’t get in your way.

Start by performing relaxation and movement exercises right before the presentation.You can also try to pump yourself up with some powerful music.

Try to get yourself excited so that you can start at a positive note.

Presentations are hard work, especially for introverts who have to work outside their comfort zone. Use this guide to make sure you’re well prepared to face the audience and create a sustained connection with them.

 

References:

4 Different Ways to Practice Your Presentation Skills.” SlideGenius, Inc. September 15, 2014. Accessed March 11, 2015.
4 Questions to Ask Yourself About Your Audience.” SlideGenius, Inc.. August 28, 2014. Accessed March 11, 2015.
Cain, Susan. “The Power of Introverts.” The Huffington Post. Accessed March 11, 2015.
Introversion.” Psychology Today. Accessed March 11, 2015.
Presentation Set Up: 5 Things to Do Before You Start Speaking.” SlideGenius, Inc. September 2, 2014. Accessed January 28, 2015.
The Power of Introverts. Susan Cain. TED, 2012.

 

Featured Image: Paintings by Robert via flickr

Make Some Noise: Presentation Tips for Introverts

Introverts are often typecast as awkward and socially inept wallflowers, and it can’t be any farther from the truth. Plenty of introverts are capable of being effective leaders and communicators. Take Abraham Lincoln, Bill Gates, J.K. Rowling, Audrey Hepburn, and Christina Aguilera—they’re just some of the many successful personalities who are identified as introverts.

Introverts vs. Extroverts

The difference between introverts and extroverts lie in where they direct their energy. While extroverts are energized by active involvement in social situations, introverts are “inward-turning” and prefer to deal with ideas, memories and reactions in their head. Because of this, introverts are more comfortable communicating with a few select people than a huge crowd.

But if you’re part of the one-third to one-half of Americans estimated to be introverts, you’ll know some that some situations require you to move out of your comfort zone. Sooner or later, your boss will ask you to give a presentation to potential investors. Don’t worry—it doesn’t have to be uncomfortable. These are a few presentation tips for introverts. Learn them and you’re sure to do more than fine.

Prepare Extensively

Preparation is the most crucial of all presentation tips for introverts. Start preparing as soon as your big presentation is scheduled.

1.) Pour over a speech that is engaging and interesting.

Make sure it follows a logical order and embellish it with your own examples and stories. Keep in mind that introverts don’t come in the same cookie-cutter shapes. Some are humorous, while others prefer to head straight to the point. No matter where you fall, learn to play on your strengths as you prepare for your presentation.

2.) As an introvert, you’re also more likely to be attuned to the needs of others.

Use this to your advantage by researching details about your possible audience and remember that the presentation you’re making is for their benefit.

You can easily gauge who’ll make part of your audience by the context and details of your presentation.

3.) Take the time to practice your presentation several times.

Rehearse your speech in front of the mirror. Better yet, you can videotape yourself so that you’ll know how it’ll look like on the big day.

4.) Include a PowerPoint presentation in your to-do-list.

This step is important considering a majority of people are visual learners.

5.) It’s normal to be nervous

A bit of anxiety and stage fright is perfectly normal for introverts and extroverts. Accept how you feel and work from there.

5.) Relax by doing a few movement exercises.

Actors exercise to loosen up their bodies before taking the stage. It’s likely that your nervousness is also making you tense.

Take deep breaths, then stretch and shake out your limbs.

Conclusion

Nobody is inherently bad at presentations. With a little help and practice, you’ll be able to deliver your own winning pitch. Just remember to always start with a smile. The audience will surely warm up to you.

By creating a friendly atmosphere, you’re less likely to worry about how they’ll perceive you.

 

References

Cain, Susan. “The Power of Introverts.” The Huffington Post. Accessed June 5, 2014.
Extraversion or Introversion.” The Myers & Briggs Foundation. Accessed June 5, 2014. 
Visual Teaching Alliance
Accessed June 5, 2014.