Introverts And The Art of Public Speaking

3 minutes

So, there’s this project at work you’ve been working really hard on. Your boss loves the idea and everything is going great until s/he tells you to present the idea to the whole team tomorrow. You’ve created the slides and proofread them twice, but every time you think of the presentation, your head feels light and you get a sick feeling in the pit of your stomach.



What are you afraid of? That you’re a quiet, reserved person and not really as bubbly as someone else?

Well, here’s news for you:

Introverts actually make better public speakers than extroverts!

Let me elaborate. Worldwide renowned speaker Dananjaya Hettiyarachchi has an interesting point to make. He says, the most important thing about a speech is connecting with the audience. This requires empathy. And introverts tend to be more empathetic than extroverts.

Hence, introverts actually make for better public speakers than extroverts!

In his own words, “When you look at introverts, they tend to be a bit more empathetic,” he told Business Insider. “When you look at extroverts, they tend to project. But some extroverts project too much, and they block out the audience. It becomes all about them. Introverts are able to structure content in a way that draws energy off the audience”.

So if you’re a quiet and shy person who has to make a presentation, don’t sweat it! Your nature actually works to your advantage.

But anyway, here are 4 tips, by Dananjaya Hettiyarachchi himself, about what to do and not to do during a public speech:

1. Do not cover your vital organs:

It is a sign of nervousness. So when you speak, do not unconsciously fold your hands or place an arm on your chest. The greatest speakers keep the channel between their bodies and the audience open.

2. Keep the inside of your palms facing the audience:

Do a little exercise. Look at the inside of your palms, then look at the other side of your hands and look at the inside of your palms again. You will find that the sight of the inside of your palms is more relaxing. The best speakers face their palms towards the audience with their gestures. You should try it too!

3. Get comfortable with the stage:

The minute you get comfortable with the stage you feel at home. So walk around the stage and get to know it better.

4. Do not touch the podium:

What if there is a podium? Just one rule, do not touch the podium. The minute you touch the podium, you tend to lean on it and your whole posture is wrong. You can keep your notes on the podium, but maintain a good distance between your body and the podium and use your hands to make gestures.

So, good luck for your presentation. Just remember, stay calm and strong. To connect to us or our experts log on to 

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Shailaja Shyamsukha

Shailaja is a special friend at YourDOST. She is a practicing psychologist with 2 years of experience. She has studied psychology from GITAM UNIVERSITY. She currently lives in Mumbai.