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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello,

I'm curious to know if other INFPs have tremendous difficulties speaking to a crowd, because I do.
And my Oral Presentation 'A' level Exam is coming up and I have no idea how to capture the crowd/examiners' attention. I'm too soft and passive.
Sometimes I can speak halfway and forget what I want to say because my mind is so active it just shut out the outside world, and sometimes thoughts seem perfectly logical but when i verbalise them they come out in a MESS.

So if you have any tips that might be specifically good for INFPs or just want to share your experience, please do so,

Thank you:)
 

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Oh yeah. Used to be absolutely terrified.

My current job cured me of that. I regularly speak in front of over a hundred people. Here's a few tips.

1. Don't make eye contact. Look at the wall just above the heads in the back. You'll LOOK like youre making eye contact, but you will not be. It helps when you first start.

2. In your head, when you get up on stage, start telling yourself as firmly as you can, that you are GOING to SCREW THIS UP. Funny thing is, you can't. It actually works. It's a good way to deal with panic too, btw. Panic and fear get worse and worse the more you say 'oh please oh please don't freak out' in your head, but if you do the opposite, and try to tell yourself to screw up, you can't Ain't reverse psychology great?

3. Use humor (if appropriate). If you can get your audience to laugh, you usually feel much more comfortable.

4. Don't try to be a 'good speaker'. You don't need a radio quality voice, or to look or seem 'authoritative. Talk normally. You're speech will seem much more authentic and genuine.

5. This really works, and almost no one does it. What you are really trying to deal with is fear, right? Well, dealing with ANY fear makes you better with dealing fear in general. Spend the day or two before doing things that you are afraid of. Climb somewhere high, ask the cute girl at the post office out, and go pet the tarantula at the pet store. Seriously. The more you get used to dealing with fear, the easier it gets. Kinda like riding a bike. It works! It's not FUN, mind you, but it works.

Hope that helps. :happy:
 

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Yes. In high school, I had to give a speech about running, and I was trying my best to do the eye contact thing and one of my friends made a stupid face at me and I laughed for four minutes straight. Every two words I broke out laughing again. So bad.

Then in college I had to take a mandatory speaking class, and it helped TONS. I remember thinking I was gonna have to take a couple shots before going to class. But the teacher made us buy this book called How to Speak Like a Pro, and it helped me immensely. That, and having to give mandatory speeches every week. I think it's just one of those things that becomes easier with practice.
 

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keep it simple, it will help you remember your main message.

keep the main thing, the main thing. don't deviate from your main message.

don't try to be all fancy and use fancy language, unless it is absolutely necessary.

relax. take a deep breath and realize that the sky will not fall because you may screw up.

if you do happen to make a mistake, keep going and keep smiling. people will forgive you if they see that you aren't fazed.
 

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5. This really works, and almost no one does it. What you are really trying to deal with is fear, right? Well, dealing with ANY fear makes you better with dealing fear in general. Spend the day or two before doing things that you are afraid of. Climb somewhere high, ask the cute girl at the post office out, and go pet the tarantula at the pet store. Seriously. The more you get used to dealing with fear, the easier it gets. Kinda like riding a bike. It works! It's not FUN, mind you, but it works.
Good advice.
 

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I always have difficulties, but using a bit of humor can help a lot to break the tension. I followed the format the teacher gave us for speaking, just imagine yourself reading outloud expressively and use the notecards(not always thogh), but write USEFUL things on the notecards. Public speaking still is an uphill battle for me, but being a person that can flip out any time I tried to use that energy and tried to be extroverted. it worked, I got a C in comm at sdsu, but hey I passed it!! always recite it, especially in front of a mirror. If you can do it looking at your own reflection in the mirror seriously(as if the presentation was taking place) try that. I will build confidence for both your mind and body and youll be saying ' I can handle this" to yourself. just dont be like me and do everything last minute and not rehearse it. rehearse it!!!!! even if you are shy, and well most INFPS are, just get a hold of a friend and ask them to help you by watching your presentation. as for opening statements, I always started with something shocking that makes the audience trip out.

I remembered I used something like, " known for their fierce lifestyle and bloody sacrifices to the gods, one would not think that chocolate was once the blood money of the aztec empire" I mean, its not even that shocking or amazing you know, but its like, show it out of context, like something wild, and then apply the catcher. in my case it was aztecs using chocolate(cacao seeds actually) as currency. but yeah, last semester I did a speech on marx and the manifesto and the similarities the US has with the burgoise, and me and my partner, I think she was an INFP cause she was quiet random, smiled and wrote poems(similar to mine), rehearsed like 4 times under the library stairs, and we got like a B on the presentation. you can do it, remember not to say 'uh or um' :). but yeah, the best way to NOT look like a jackass and still pass the class is to rehearse and do it ahead of time. I know we can improvise alot, but when you are being graded, in front of a class, improvisation has its limits(although if you take on a funny or somekind of strong stance the teachers will fall for it) but yeah........best advice is to make a simple outline, rehearse it, and take it personally to the teacher(build some confidence at least with one person) so he/she can correct it. it is not that hard and if you gain the confidence to do it, you will shine through, I know it. oh yeah, and remember, take notes on the presentations of others, but remember do not let their 'styles' scare you into thinking that your presentation is wrong. more than likely, they are asking the same questions and struggling over the same thing. so yeah, i wont send you luck, I will wish you success, as a struggling INFP college student, I know what you are going thru, but cmon, you can do it!!!!!!! mucha suerte :)
 

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If you can write you can speak. Your an INFP so unless the topic is just flat/dull Im sure you can make it interesting. Just be yourself, practice what you have to say, and organize it. I used to cry when I got up in crouds when I was a kid. But my church made us give speeches in front of hundreds of people so I guess after a few times I found even if nervous to just speak as clearily as possible and be myself generally, and its actually quite fun. Think of it like giving your opinion in this forum. In a way your speaking to numerous people. Just not with your voice. You can do it I promise! You might find you like it because youll be able to share your ideas. But yeah preparation is key and youll be nervous as heck but just go for it and talk through that.
 

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Can you explain the presentation a bit more?

Demographic, "examiner?", what's your topic, etc etc.

I generally do really well on presentations (A or higher), but I don't want to mislead you if yours may be of a certain nature.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Can you explain the presentation a bit more?

Demographic, "examiner?", what's your topic, etc etc.

I generally do really well on presentations (A or higher), but I don't want to mislead you if yours may be of a certain nature.
The audience consists of 24 classmates, a few teachers and about a panel of examiners who will grade our presentation and how well we deliver our speech. My topic is on Elderly Crime Prevention but i guess thats kinda irrelevant haha. I just keep blacking out when all eyes are on me :/
 

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The audience consists of 24 classmates, a few teachers and about a panel of examiners who will grade our presentation and how well we deliver our speech. My topic is on Elderly Crime Prevention but i guess thats kinda irrelevant haha. I just keep blacking out when all eyes are on me :/
Sounds good, I've done a few similar crime related presentations :D.

Anyways, are you allowed to use visual aids? ie: Powerpoint? This is pretty much the norm in Universities so it's a big win if it's available to you.

If it is available, quite simply, make it absolutely awesome. Lots of vibrant pictures (related), debatable questions, interesting facts and text. All that jazz. The brilliance of this is that it allows you to dim the lights in the class and people will think it's so they can focus on the slides. This lowers the attention off you significantly and in some respects makes it harder for you to see peoples faces / expressions. -- If you can do this, send me a private message and I'll show you some things I've done in the past. Plus I can have a glance at anything you may have prepared -- if you wish.

If that option isn't really available to you then that's fine too. Try not to stress over things and go outside your standard routine, but I would -highly- recommend you avoid energy drinks, caffeine, etc. Those will likely make you fidget and anxious in these kind of situations.

One trick I do is that I pace around. This allows me to keep the blood flowing, prevent any fidgeting, allows -me- to dissociate myself with the crowd, but also makes people pay more attention to you as they work out the kink in their neck from staring forward for the last few presentations. Most INFPs talk to themselves, it's just a matter of going back to that place while in a presentation and forgetting, to an extent, that everyone else exists.

If you actually know your topic then you're far above the rest of the groups as well. I've been the "examiner " quite a few times. I can tell when someone basically neglected their work until the 3am the night before this presentation vs someone who actually knows their stuff. Most importantly, I know that being in front of people is a common fear many people have and because of that, it's easy to overlook the odd slip up here and there. It's truly not a big deal from a -grading- standpoint.

Let me know if you do the PP route :D. I've done far too many of them, but I've also taught classes without using any material at all.
 

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It might sound really weird, but I just pretend everyone is a robot and I'm the only living thing talking. Or I might try my best to forget other people are watching me especially if there is really a lot. But I kinda always been put into situation where I had to speak up in front of small and large crowds so I've gotten used to it and look at each speech as a sort of challenge for myself.
 
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