Few fears can be more paralyzing than the mere thought of standing in front a group of people and giving a public speech. I know such a feat can be daunting but I’m here to give you my step-by-step system that has a ONE HUNDRED PERCENT effectiveness in getting rid of that fear.

I have applied this system with more than 1000 people with different degrees of dread about speaking in public and in every single one of them, it has worked.

The caveat? my system requires actual work, and you will feel levels of cringe about yourself that will rival your worst “I’m in underwear, what the f!” nightmares. But at least said cringe will be in total privacy.

Fear of public speaking does not come ‘pre-programmed’ in our psyche, such as the fear of falling and the fear of mother-in-laws. Public speaking gives you the bad chills because of more primal and profound terrors, and the most important is:

Fear of being judged and ridiculed.

After all, you WILL be judged, because you’re literally standing in front of people. That is just the reality with any scenario. If you’re a guitarist in a rock band, or a magician, or a stand up comedian, people are there to listen to you and judge if you’re worth it.

So, first of all, fearing something that will happen no matter what (people judging you), the moment you set foot at a scenario or at the front of your class, doesn’t make much sense. I know it doesn’t help much to allay your fear, but this is to put something in perspective:

YOUR own judgment of  YOURSELF is getting in the way first.

Because the fear of public speaking is felt by just thinking about the event happening, it means that you’re judging yourself before it has happened. Because the only way people can judge you is actually doing the thing, right?

So, we need to get rid of the feeling BEFORE you give your speech.

Now, you could say at this point that “I will be judged and ridiculed, I don’t want to do it”

And that’s a fair point. But just by the fact that you’re reading this, I suppose that you WANT to do it… but without the fear, right?

So that’s something. You WANT to do it, and do it without being so frightened.

Let’s establish another fact: You really can’t possibly know how it will go. It can end up great, or not so great. It can be an awesome experience or can be a catastrophic failure. Your projector could fail. Maybe someone stands ups and leaves. There’s a blackout. Maybe a volcano erupts right next to the venue.

But maybe, just maybe, things can go OK, right?

What you actually fear is the UNCERTAINTY about what’s going to happen.

I also sense that this might not be your first rodeo, and it’s always been like this: You dread giving the speech, you fear whatever it’s going to happen, then the time comes, you keep your sanity through it… and then feel that RUSH of feel-good dopamine and endorphins. But the next time you need to speak in public, the feelings creep up again. You dread doing it. You dread the day coming… but then you do it OK, people are happy, and you’re happy again… and the cycle repeats over and over again.

Again, whether if this is your first time or not, the thing you fear the most is the UNCERTAINTY about what’s going to happen.

Impromptu volcano eruption and all.

Just to be sure, could you be mixing up fear of public speaking with imposter syndrome? because there would be no more spectacular-est way to expose you as the fraud (you think) you are than on a stage, right?

Imposter syndrome is beyond the scope of this system, but just make sure to give it a thought.


You have to practice more. Thanks for coming to my TED Talk!

No, wait! that was a joke. Or… maybe half of that was a joke. Because my system, in fact, involves practice. But the problem is that most people don’t know how to practice effectively. They just rehearse the material over and over again, and every time they do so, instead of feeling more confident, their fear INCREASES.

Have you felt like this? The more you practice, the less confident you feel about your material?

That is absolutely normal. But why, I hear you ask? Simple: no matter how clever the content, the more you read and go through it over and over again, the more commonplace and trite becomes to you. So that clever quip you included three minutes in, now sounds just plain stupid.

But the clever quip hasn’t become stupid. You just got desensitized to it. That’s it.

So, what is the ‘right way to practice’? glad you asked! here is, step by step, what you MUST do to get rid of the fear of public speaking, once and for all.


I suppose that you already got your ‘script’ ready from beginning to end, or at least the idea of what you’re going to talk about, including your slides or any other material you’ll use in your presentation. If this is not ready 100% yet, make it so and then come back.

Ready? well, the first step is to mimic the real thing (your speech) as close to reality as possible. If you’ll be standing up in front of a live audience, you’re going to rehearse it standing up. If it’s sitting down online talking to a camera, you will rehearse it exactly like that.

But most important: You must decide what you’re going to wear and wear it during your practice and rehearsals. Shoes and all. And this has to be EXACTLY like the real thing.

IF you can’t wear the EXACT thing you’ll be using, go for the closest thing possible. But this is non negotiable.


If your speech is standing up, get yourself a tripod and put your phone camera towards you. Make sure to leave three steps of space to your left and right so you can move more or less freely while giving your presentation, and make sure the camera will always have you on the frame when you move around that space.

If the speech is online and to a camera, you don’t need to do anything else (provided you’ve applied my checklist for setting up your camera and lights).

If your presentation includes projected slides and you don’t have a projector, prop your laptop on a table right beside you and use the screen as if it was the projected presentation that people are going to see. If you’re going to use any kind of remote, use it.

You might have noticed that the idea behind this is that the only effective way to practice a presentation is to give it as close as the real deal will be.

Ready? then hit record on your camera and phone and let’s go. But keep in mind the next step!


This is important, if not critical. Once the camera is rolling and everything is set up, you cannot stop. If you fumble a slide, fix it and go on. If you stutter, go on. If you slip and fall and break your hip and scream in pain, stand up again no matter what and continue. If you lose the track of what you were saying, take your time and then continue.


This is of UTMOST importance. This is not the time to judge yourself. Imagine that this is some kind of live presentation that is being broadcasted to a LIVE audience. Does it make you more nervous? for sure! but it also means that you cannot stop, or retry a section, or start again. NO.


Did you finish? great.

Oh, you’d want to do a second take of the whole presentation? that’s great, nice spirit! If that’s so, then DELETE the previous recording. Erase it from existence. It never happened.

Start again, and you already know:

Do not stop.

Done? amazing! you’re ready for the worst part:


The next step can be done immediately after your practice session, but I recommend that you do it a few hours later. In fact, the very best approach should be the next day (a sleeping session in between will do wonders).

What this next step entails is to watch yourself from beginning to end, notepad in hand. Make yourself as comfortable as possible while you do it, because you WILL cringe watching yourself.

Why the notepad? because you will pause your presentation every 15 seconds or so, and will assess how you feel about each part. “Everything sucks, I’m a total failure, I’m not doing this, this is not working” is not a valid answer. I’m not suggesting that you sugarcoat the bad things, but try to be objective with each part. Are there exciting sections? are there boring parts? where did you stumble? were some slides hard to read? were some slides confusing?

Make sure that this thorough assessment of your own speech is done by hand. Pen or pencil on paper. This is important, because this taps into your brain in ways that typing doesn’t.

Ready? well… things are about to get worse:


Now, still with pen or pencil on paper, write a verdict about your observations. Note: I’m not talking about how you FEEL about your speech. But how you JUDGE yourself. It’s like you were watching and judging yourself in third person (In some sense, you are). But this is important.

Three to five lines will suffice. Now, what were the three WORST parts of your speech, and what made them the worst? Yeah, maybe you were awful all the time, but which three parts were the absolute ‘knee deep in the gutter’ stuff? Write them down with the WHY were them so bad.

Was it your delivery? you stumbled? were they especially boring? Did you just forget what you had to say? Too much text on the slides? Your body language changed to that of a protozoa? Your throat stopped working? All of the above?

Nice! now you know WHAT you did wrong, which were the WORST parts and WHY they were so bad.

You’re ready for the next part that finally reduces the amount of cringe in this process:


Now that you know what are the worst parts of your speech and why did you fumble them so bad, you’re going to write down the ideal way they should have gone.

And by ‘write down’, you’re going to write down WHAT you should have said in those instances. In handwriting. This is important.

Once you’ve got the three parts ‘fixed’ in handwriting, rehearse them one by one by taking looks at your ‘script’. You don’t need to dress up for this, you just need to make sure whatever you wrote comes off naturally for you this time. You are NOT going to rehearse the whole presentation but instead, just the TERRIBLE parts, one by one. Do each for at least 10 minutes. That’s a bare minimum!

The idea is to convert the ‘terrible’ parts into ‘ok’ parts. Sometimes things go really well and the terrible parts turn out to be the BEST parts of your speech, but nothing is guaranteed. At this stage, ‘ok’ is good enough.

IF new ideas come to you during this phase, make sure to write them down and adjust your speech/presentation as necessary. When you’ve done your homework, it’s time to move on to the last step…


Ok, so you have turned your three WORST parts into ‘ok’ ones. It’s time to repeat everything from step 1.

Going through all the steps again should feel different. Could be a sensation hard to explain, but you don’t really need to explain it. You just need to notice that ‘something’ is different this time.

Now, in this second attempt you will notice that parts that were OK before, now can be improved. And there will be ‘terrible’ parts again, but maybe not as terrible as before. Maybe some of the OK parts became ‘not so good’, but don’t worry about it; this is only your second attempt at the process.

As you might have already guessed, this method works only when you do it AT LEAST three times. And it’s event-dependent, which means that if you need to give a different speech, you MUST go through the system again.


Ok, now… I understand that you might have reservations about this. Is that it? no NLP tricks? no self-hypnosis? no ayahuasca trip? no mindset hammering?

Well, it is NOT exactly easy, as you might have noticed. So it’s not like I’m giving you a silver bullet or anything.

But how does it work?

Well, as stated at the start of this guide, the thing you fear most is to be mocked or ridiculed, right? and that comes from the UNCERTAINTY that you’re facing in terms of public speaking. If the audience is going to be patient or hostile, if the projector is going to work as needed, etc.

But to be realistic, you cannot control anything that is outside of yourself. You cannot control the audience, or the projector, or volcanoes.

THE ONE thing that you can control is your own delivery. So, if there’s ONE thing that you can do to reduced the uncertainty factor and in turn, the odds that you’ll be ‘mocked and ridiculed’… is your own speech.

You’re reducing uncertainty about your delivery to a minimum. But it’s not that simple, because this system covers other angles of your transformation:

  • It forces you to get used to your own body language and voice, in third person. This is the cringiest part, hands down. Nobody likes to see himself speaking in public. That’s why you must force yourself to get used to it. Get used to the REAL sound of your voice. Notice how it fluctuates with your emotions. Spot when you obviously don’t know what to do with your hands. By forcing you to watch yourself, you’re getting used to it.
  • It makes you stop and think about the weakest parts of your speech and develop them into ‘ok’ parts, leveling you up in the process. This is plain and simple grunt work, but in a smart way. Practicing the whole speech lots of times will be a waste of time, because you will tend to overlook the mistakes and boring parts. You NEED to face those, head on. Be raw honest about them and focus on those. When you run the system two or three times, you will be not only better prepared but will have a better presentation on your hands. After all, of what use is practicing a presentation 50 times if it never evolves and gets better?
  • It requires you to use handwriting, which is a surefire process to unlock the right areas of your brain. The connection brain-hand-pen-paper is magical. There are lots of studies about that, but much more practical is to just do it and notice the difference. You’re using that magical connection to convert your terrible speech sections into ‘ok’ ones. That’s the hardest part, so you need to use all your brain for it. Doing this enough times, and you’ll realize that the ‘ok’ parts can become ‘good’ parts… and some ‘good’ parts can become ‘great’ parts. Don’t be surprised if some ‘great’ parts become ‘amazing’. But you must start from the bottom of the barrel. The gutter. The awful and focus all your mindpower on those.

So, getting used to your own body language and voice, polishing your speech to the max and priming your brain into always think about the best delivery, WILL get rid of your fear of public speaking.

But let’s be clear: you will always feel a bit anxious and elated before a public speech. That’s the transformation. That’s something that you actually need. You need that strong feeling to be there but not as a ‘fear’, but as ‘anticipation’. Makes sense?

If you feel nothing before a speech, you won’t be able to imbue your audience with anything. And every speech NEEDS passion.


Does this work for any kind of presentation?

Yes. Public speaking, in person or online, rock musicians, stand up comedians, magicians, anyone who feels afraid of performing in front of an audience. It’s the exact same process. And it works.

How quickly does this work? I have a presentation tomorrow!

This is hands down the most popular question, lol. It largely depends on the length of your presentation. If it’s 15 minutes, you should be able to do a full system cycle in around one hour and a half. If the presentation is 45-ish minutes, a full system cycle will be around 3 hours (you have to record yourself and then watch the video taking notes, that alone would be around 2 very, very tight hours). Anyway, unless you have an impossibly tight window, you should be able to run through the 7 steps at least three times, which should be enough for emergencies.

What if I feel overwhelmed or frustrated during the practice sessions?

Imagine yourself in your deathbed. Imagine yourself reminiscing this moment and how you felt overwhelmed or frustrated by… *checks notes*, a private rehearsal of a public speech. How would your deathbed-ridden future self feel? Yeah, pretty much disappointed! now, go ahead and start the steps again!

I’m not afraid that the public will judge me, but that they will be unengaged and disinterested. What should I do?

That’s an excellent question, but in fact, a disengaged or distracted audience is a matter for another article that I’ll be writing soon. Right now you need to focus on yourself. AFTER you’ve mastered your own craft, you can worry about how to be more engaging with the public. Walking before running. This will work, you just need patience and work!

Are there any relaxation or breathing exercises I could use?

Yes. Box breathing. Breathe in for four seconds, hold four seconds, exhale for four seconds, wait four seconds before inhaling again. Repeat the whole cycle seven times, as close to your presentation as possible.

What if I’ve gone through this process 10+ times and my fear of public speaking is still there?

No worries! there are always outliers and special cases in everything. IF you’ve gone through this process 10+ times and still feel the same, just email me at jrosas@knesix.com and we’ll find out why this is not doing its magic. Be warned: I WILL KNOW if you’ve gone through these steps 10+ times. If I find out that you’re trying to ‘cheat’ me into fixing you without putting in the work, I will block you on the spot. So you have been warned!

Anyway, best of luck!

Much love and bliss,

Jesús – The Body Language Guy.

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