Getting into an ideal presentation state is as easy as child’s play. Literally, because for children playing make-believe is not only easy, it is second nature.
Kids love pretending to be somebody else. They become a princess, a warrior, a detective, or any other character they can imagine. And they do it in the blink of an eye. This is a practical skill we never lose, even if we don’t exercise it as much as children do.
Outstanding presenters often take on a different personality during their presentations. They realize that a presentation is a performance. They slip into a different version of themselves. A version that speaks more energetically, gestures more, moves with purpose, and smiles from the heart. They change into a version of themselves in an ideal emotional state that combines confidence, enthusiasm, and excitement.
Your Ideal Presentation State
To find your own ideal presentation state — a state that allows you to transfer your emotions easily — think of a time in your past you would describe as exhilarating. A time when you felt at your very best, totally psyched, and ready to conquer the world. Perhaps you just won something, or maybe you engaged in an activity that brings you ultimate joy.
Whatever it is that got you into a state of sheer excitement, go back to that moment in your mind and remember it in vivid detail. See what you saw at that time. Hear what you heard. And notice the shift in your posture and the feeling spreading through your body. Use this as a baseline for your ideal presentation state.
The good news is that this baseline feeling is as easy to access as vividly remembering a past moment. You just did it. The even better news is that the more you do this, the quicker you’ll access this state. Before you know it, you will go there automatically whenever needed.
Developing Your Own Ritual
To get into an ideal presentation state, many professional speakers have a ritual they follow before stepping into the spotlight, either on stage or on screen. These rituals have a practical purpose. They help the speaker focus on the moment.
Some of these rituals include power posing for a few minutes or performing breathing exercises. Others include making vivid images of a happy and supportive audience that is cheering the speaker on. And some speakers might go through their opening lines or listen to an uplifting and energizing song in their mind. Many of these rituals include focusing on what really matters: your audience and how you can help them.
We are all different and what works for some people might be counter-productive to others. Following somebody else’s ritual might not work for you. Experiment to find out what works best for you to get into a most resourceful state, your ideal presentation state.
Practice getting into this state on purpose whenever you have a chance, not just when you present. Over time you will gain the ability to go there in the blink of an eye…and look forward to your next presentation.