Top 15 Ways to Build Self-esteem in Public Speaking

By | August 15, 2023
Self-esteem in Public Speaking
With a high self-esteem, you can have a great public speaking event.

Top 15 Ways to Build Self-esteem in Public Speaking

The art of public speaking is something some people to a varying degree struggle to do, not really because they don’t want to be good public speakers, but it seems something has tampered with their confidence and self-esteem.

Building of self-esteem entails building the necessary confidence needed to succeed in the art of public speaking.

If you are interested in learning how to build self-confidence to excel in public speaking, here are some tips you can apply:

Best 15 Ways to Build Self-esteem in Public Speaking

  1. Practice

This is the first thing that should come to your mind when talking about public speaking.

Practice is necessary for you to have before you embark on any sort of public presentation.

It will be a bad idea for you not to practice before entering the stage to render your presentation.

There are quite a lot of things to work on when you are practicing. Such things include your intonation, pitch, speed of speech, and your choice of words.

These are some of the things you should take cognizance of during your personal practice.

Regular practice helps you cut off some mistakes that you may not be able to avoid if you don’t practice.

That is why it is very important that you take time to practice whatever you are to make a presentation; master your presentation and do your best on stage.

2. Find your way round your mistakes

This is where your level of expertise is put to the test as a public speaker.

There is no denying the fact that mistakes and sometimes blunders happen on stage.

It can happen at any time and can happen to anyone when you don’t see it coming.

The most worrying side of this point is not the mistake you may make during public presentation, but rather your reaction and how you can cover up the mistakes without making it obvious.

This is where you need to learn how to find your way round mistakes.

Sometimes, you can make joke of the mistake and move on from there.

It is not a good idea to dwell so much on the mistake until it becomes so obvious that you have run out of ideas on how to get your way round the mistakes.

Just be creative in this respect and you will see your self-esteem growing over time and you will be able to give a wow presentation in your public speaking engagements.

3. Make the audience laugh if you can

Public presentation is not a solemn assembly, neither is it a place where you take things too seriously.

You have to make the audience feel at home and relax their nerves as much as you can, which will also help you to build your self esteem.

One of the ways to do this is to make them laugh when necessary.

Some of the best presenters the world can reckon with are people that knew how to engage the audience throughout the time of their presentations.

One of the ways they are able to achieve this feat is by making the audience laugh when necessary.

Making the audience laugh is one of the ways to rattle their minds and make them follow you for the rest of the presentation.

However, understand that making the audience laugh does not automatically make you a comedian neither does it turn the presentation into a comedy.

Just relief the audience a little and continue from where you stopped.

4. Focus on those that are following your presentation

Sometimes, it is not your fault that the whole audience may not follow you. This is because many people in the audience could have some things running through their minds as at the time you are making your presentation.

This is natural and you should not allow it to dampen your self-esteem.

This should not knock you off your feet neither should you allow it to destabilize you in your presentation.

All you need to do is that as much as you want to engage the whole audience, be more concerned about those following you.

This you should do so that you don’t in the process of trying to get the attention of everyone end up losing the attention of those that have been following your presentation keenly.

Note those that are following and try to engage them more and you will have a good speaking engagement, which will enhance your self-esteem.

5. Be expressive particularly with your emotions

Your presentation is not all about what you say with your mouth or what you have noted down that you want to engage the audience with.

To have a wholesome presentation, you should be able to engage your emotions, especially when you are trying to make some points clear.

In this case, you need to move around purposefully.

You need not necessarily stand at a place unless there is absolutely a need for you to stand at one spot; otherwise consider moving around the podium.

This will help you capture the attention of the audience and make your presentation lively, which affects your self-esteem positively.

Also, your body language and your expressions matter a lot during a public speaking presentation.

It is how you use your body that makes your presentation look or sound convincing.

Let the visible parts of your body do more of the explanation than your mouth.

6. Improve your comfort level

Your performance on stage or podium is highly dependent on how comfortable you are when standing in front of the audience.

Stage fright is what makes you fidget on stage when making your presentation.

This is a sign associated with amateurs.

But as you keep growing in the art of public speaking, the issue of stage fright will be a forgotten matter in no time.

This comes with regular practice in front of someone presumably a coach or in front of your trusted friends who can help make suggestions on how best you can go about your presentation.

To improve your comfort level, get to know the type of audience you have in terms of age, background, and culture.

When you know all these things, you will know how best to communicate with them and this could build your confidence and self-esteem in the long run.

7. Pay more attention to the audience

Your audience should be your major concern when you are having a public speaking engagement.

Your desire should be to communicate with your audience in a way that they understand whatever you have to say.

Their participation is one of the ways to know if they are following.

As you know, the kind of audience you have should determine your mode of communication.

When you have an audience with an average age of over 60 years, one of the things that you should know is that some of them may not be conversant with some mode of communication at the moment.

Their speed of understanding could be slow compared to the speed of learning when you are dealing with a younger audience.

So, in paying attention to the type of audience you have, your major concern should be the best way to engage with them to make sure that you communicate effectively.

Your self-confidence will be boosted if you are able to communicate effectively with your audience and get their attention through the presentation.

8. Control your breathing

This is geared towards you having more clarity when you are addressing an audience.

Just like in singing, the need to coordinate your breathing is paramount to whatever you do on stage.

Breathe well so that you will be able to speak well.

Breathing well helps you moderate the rate at which you speak, and as you know, moderation is needed when you are addressing people from the stage.

This is why practicing how to breathe will help you achieve this feat.

If you can control your breath, then you can control your speech rate.

This could take lots of practice to perfect.

So everything still comes down to you practicing well before engaging in a public presentation.

Breathe control is one of the things you will need to practice while doing your general practice.

9. Get a coach

Getting yourself a good coach could be a good thing if you are interested in gaining self-esteem in public speaking.

You will need to get someone who is largely skilled in public presentation and related fields.

This could help speed up your learning process.

Getting a coach does not necessarily entail having to meet with a person physically for training.

There are other ways you can employ the services of an expert even without having to meet the expert in person.

One of the ways you can do that is through following people on social media.

E-learning has brought about the possibility of learning from a distance.

This is a fantastic idea for people who might have a serious job to do daily.

So, e-learning provides you with the opportunity to learn at your convenience and still get what you want.

10. Believe you can do it

The principle of confidence and self-esteem is on the basis of your belief system.

How far you believe in yourself goes a long way to determining how far you can travel in your journey of building self-esteem in public speaking.

This is so true to be argued.

Even if you get a life coach and yet you lack belief in your abilities, then you may end up struggling to achieve the best things in public speaking.

Every other thing you do should find its basis on the fact that you believe you can do it.

Finding your belief should be the first thing you should work on.

If you don’t believe you can be the best, then you cannot be the best.

If you look down on yourself, it will reflect in the downturn of your performance on stage.

So, start believing in yourself and see your self-esteem grow.

11. Do some light exercise before presentation

Exercise is not just good for your general health; it could also do you good if you do so before your presentation.

The human body works in such a way that the health of one part of the body has a way of extending to other parts.

Part of the gain you get from doing regular exercises is that your mind is conditioned to do some good stuff while being relieved of some stress that could be mental.

So, doing some light exercises before your presentation could help relax your mind in a good way.

Before each presentation, ensure that you exercise your body a little.

That little exercise could help relax your tensed up mind and lighten you up, which is needful whenever you want to do some public presentation.

That can have a big positive effect on your self-esteem and make your public speaking engagement a success.

12. Meet/greet your audience before your presentation

This is one of the ways to calm your frayed nerves.

Meeting your audience before the start of the presentation if you are given that freedom or privilege to do so could help you get in contact with them and shake hands.

This will help you get accustomed with your audience.
However, care should be taken not to abuse this privilege.

Meeting your audience should be done in a professional and ethical manner.

This means that when you are meeting your audience, be business minded and avoid discussing personal issues.

Meeting or greeting your audience should be a deliberate act to help you get acquainted with them.

When you do this, you should smile and be friendly in your approach.

This could help boost your confidence and self-esteem ahead of your presentation and calm your frayed nerves.

13. Put on a smile

Frowning of face or putting on a look that depicts sadness is not really a good idea if you are someone that wants to build self-esteem in public speaking.

The role of a smile is to make the audience feel relaxed while listening to you and not put them in a scenario where your frown becomes a distraction to them.

So, whether it is when you are on the stage or when you are meeting your audience in person, learn to wear a good smile.

This will help the audience feel at home and feel wanted.

When you frown, the audience is more likely to lose interest in what you have to say.

Also, understand that you should learn to smile even when you are confronted with questions that may seem to be aimed at undermining your effort.

Don’t be quick to go toe-to-toe with the audience. Be calm and let your smile kill off the tension.

14. Examine the environment before presentation

This is an important point to note. Knowing your environment and the setup of the place that you are to make your presentation from is also important.

If you can do that, please do, it will prepare you well to know to coordinate your movement when you are on the stage.

The knowledge of the environment could entail knowing the sitting arrangement in the environment and how people are seated.

Also, you have to take cognizance of the different category of people that will be seated in the audience prior to your presentation.

This will help you make up your mind on how to move around the stage and get the attention of everyone in the audience.

The audience is very sensitive when it comes to where you face most when doing your presentation. Be even in your movement.

15. Practice the first minute

In public presentations, the first minute is very important. How you start your presentation will determine to a great extent if the audience will like to sit down and listen to what you have to say.

This is why you need to practice what happens in the first minute of your presentation.

One of the ways you can start your presentation is through telling a short story.

Story telling has a way of capturing the minds of people. It has a way of giving the audience a mental picture of what you are about to talk about and prepare their minds to receive your presentation.

Your effort in the first minute of your presentation should be to get the full attention of your audience.

If you are able to start on the right note, then the audience will have no choice but to give you their undivided attention, and that will boost your self-esteem.

That first minute could make or mar your presentation depending on how you go about it.


Public speaking is never an easy task, especially if you are entirely new to the system.

Public speaking demands confidence, expertise, and most importantly, self-esteem.

Building your self-esteem is something you need to give attention to if you want to do well in your public speaking presentations.

Self-esteem in public speaking is not something that happens overnight. It takes a lot of determination to get better and effective practices to get to where you are aspiring to be in the art of public speaking.

The points highlighted on this page above will help you build a strong self-esteem for success in your public speaking engagements.