Mastering the Art of Enthusiasm on Stage

May 11, 2015

how-to-become-enthusiastic-on-stage-BLOGBack in 2004, I took a journey. It was a 159-mile run from Mt. Rainier to the Pacific Ocean, and I did this trek with four other individuals.

It was long. It was brutal. But, it was definitely worth it.

Thinking back to that moment, there is one quality that helped us make it through those long nights and days.

When spirits were low, enthusiasm made us optimistic. When energy levels were depleted, enthusiasm helped us find a second wave. When we wanted to give up, those with enthusiasm said, “Keep going.” It helped us get to the finish line.

Now becoming enthusiastic is not easy, especially when doing something daunting like taking the stage in front of 1,000 people -- or even 100. The demands of your day, travel schedule, or the presentation itself already provide a fair amount of stress. But, you need to overcome these obstacles. Why? Because enthusiasm matters. It displays passion. It displays conviction. It displays that you care about your topic and your audience.

Personally, I struggle with being enthusiastic every day and have to be really deliberate with making it happen in front of a room. Sometimes even finding a small bit of optimism (a few minutes worth) can be quite the challenge given the regular stresses and obligations of life.

Bottom line: It takes work. But, here’s the good news: There are few things you can do to trick your mind and body. Here's how to get you into a more enthusiastic mindset:


-Tip #1: Hold a power pose. Our bodies increase the level of testosterone by 20% when in this pose. Testosterone boosts confidence and motivation.

-Tip #2:  Utilize the facial feedback hypothesis. Hold a pen horizontally in between your teeth to contract muscles around mouth and eyes. Studies prove that this exercise creates a sense of happiness.

-Tip #3: Use your hands. Palms facing up express openness. Palms facing down express conviction.

-Tip #4: Relax. Loosen up and breathe through your mouth and say, “aah” before you present.

-Tip #5: Blink less. Express confidence by avoiding rapid blinking.

Presenting, unlike most things in life, is here to stay, and it will always be a part of your journey. You are constantly selling, promoting, and marketing yourself, your business, or your cause.

So, to get the best results, let’s master this thing called enthusiasm.

READ MORE: The One Trait You Need to Become a Star Presenter

Author Bio

Scott Schwertly is the author of How to Be a Presentation God and CEO of Ethos3, a Nashville, TN-based presentation boutique providing professional presentation design and training for national and international clients ranging from Fortune 500 companies to branded individuals like Guy Kawasaki. If Scott is not working with his team building presentations, you will find him in the pool, on the bike, or on a long run. Scott lives in Nashville, TN with his wife and three dogs. He has a B.A. and M.B.A. from Harding University.

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Photo courtesy of Ethos3