Keep calm and speak
It’s no secret that my favourite part of a wedding is the speeches. But when all the guests are relaxing on the chairs with a couple of glasses of Champagne, it’s easy to forget that those giving the speeches (be it the father-of-the-bride, the best man or even the groom himself!) could be suffering an ordeal that we wouldn’t wish on anyone.
Wedding speech nerves are amongst the worst. We so desperately want it all to go well but might not be used to speaking in public or might be worried about the content. Even the most confident performers suffer some wedding speech nerves – I bet even Danny Jones was a bit nervous before his wedding speech song!
Having done a couple of speeches of my own and worked with people with performance nerves, I have a bit of advice on getting over the nerves.
Don’t drink too much
This is probably the most important thing – it won’t help the nerves, but will definitely help the speech. Limit yourself to a couple of glasses before the speech and then celebrate its success afterwards!
Everyone wants it to be a success
Remember, this isn’t a competition, everyone is rooting for you and wants you to give a great speech. So stop worrying about impressing people, be yourself and try to enjoy it!
Try and get some practise in public speaking if you’re not used to it. It could be running a meeting at work, trying your speech out in front of trusted friends or simply asking people on the bus if they found a misplaced phone.You can also try videoing yourself practising your speech – you’ll be surprised at how few of the inner nerves are shown.
Be well prepared
If nothing is left to chance, there are no nasty surprises, and this means that you will be more confident. So prepare everything, and even try a run through at the venue if you can.
Remember that your speech isn’t supposed to be torture – it’s about you giving your message to those that you really care about. Try to relax and enjoy it!