If you’ve never seen the movie Broadcast News, you probably haven’t seen this painful and uncomfortable clip from the movie. Still, it’s worth your time:
This can really happen to anyone, even the news pro’s can get tongue tied, cotton-mouthed, and yes, sweaty. Nerves can destroy any on-camera appearance, whether you are the host of a corporate video, or are preparing for a TV news interview, here are few simple things you can do ease your nerves and subsequently, perform better on-camera:
I’m not kidding. When that little red record light goes on, a lot of people forget to breathe and run out of oxygen, as they try to cram as many words as they can into the shortest time possible. Stop talking, Take a couple of seconds to breathe and launch again. While you may be feeling the pressure, I promise you, appearing on-camera is not a race (sorry Gilmore Girls-an entire TV show based on the idea to talk over as many people as possible. Not a fan.) Breath through your nose and out your mouth. Re-launch. You will be much more relaxed and effective.
Focus on the interviewer, not the camera.
So many people get caught up in the camera lens and they end up forgetting about the most important part of the interview-the message! Forget the camera and instead focus on the person asking you the questions. The camera and operator will take care of the technical process, so your only focus should be on the person in front of you. The less you think about the camera and the more you focus on the interview, the better your chances of reducing nerves and performing better on-camera.
Most people appearing on-camera feel they have to fill very second with talking or my God, there will be awkward silence! I say, embrace the silence. Not a lot of silence, mind you, but an occasional pause with no speaking can go a long ways toward reducing nerves and increasing performance. Why? When you take a short moment to pause, it allows you to catch your breath, and also think about your next line BEFORE you say it. It’s really a win win.
Additionally, posture is really important too. If sitting, make sure you are sitting up nice and straight. Not only will you look good, but your diaphragm will thank you. When you slouch it’s physically harder to speak. So makes sure your back is straight and your shoulders are back.
Now, go rock that interview.