I'm officially back from judging a pageant in New Jersey this weekend and it inspired me to write this post:
Many girls wonder if they appear confident on stage...so how do you know if you do? Inner confidence comes from a combination of self-belief and real enthusiasm for your message - what message are you giving? Always consider what your message is before competing; you want to make sure that everything you do matches with your goals - when you know what you're focused on and what is important to you, you will instantly appear more confident!
Consider these points when preparing...and you should be ready to nail it!
1. Is my eye contact strong?
You should be looking at the judges, always. They are the ones scoring you! Don't lose valuable points just because you wanted to look at mom or above their heads instead - eye contact is eye contact and it really does demonstrate confidence! It makes a bold statement - "yes, I'm looking at you...so look at ME!"
2. Am I projecting my voice and personality?
Even if you're on a microphone, you need to project (not eat the microphone) your voice. Most importantly, project your personality! If you say a personal introduction or give an answer to a question, we want the natural, fun you...not the monotone, boring, "deer in headlights" one.
3. Am I maintaining good posture?
Pull those shoulders back, tighten your tummy/abs, and tuck your pelvis in/bottom under. Whether you're sitting in a chair or standing on stage, the judges want to see that you care about your entire appearance...and posture helps! Poor posture indicates poor body language, you look disinterested and not confident...at all. When you stand tall, you think tall...so, be tall! You can win the attention and respect of an audience and panel of judges even before you begin simply through your posture - the way you occupy the space around.
4. Are my hand gestures natural?
Are you tugging at your clothes? Are you picking at your hair? Are your fingers twitching or are your hands in fists? You can most certainly use small hand gestures to reinforce points, just as you would in casual conversation (interviews should be casual conversations anyway). I always say that your gestures should be above the belly button and should never be intimidating (pointing, fists, grabbing a podium etc).
5. Do I appear calm and in control?
Slow and deep breathes before going on stage really can enhance your performance, as it boosts the supply of oxygen your brain gets and makes you more alert. It also helps you to stay calm, increases the air over your vocal chords, and enhances the clarity of your voice. Speak slowly and move with purpose, meaning if you doubt you need the movement, you don't need it.
Use these five tips to help you be prepared and confident for on-stage presentations/competitions. And if you have any questions or want to work on your confidence, presentation/competition ability etc, just send me email and let's get on that!
With your success in mind,