Patricia Stark, a Media Trainer and Public Speaking Coach & CEO of Patricia Stark Communications Inc., teaches NYC acting classes at Actor’s Connection. Here are her top 18 tips for perfecting auditions, job interviews and presentations.
1. Nerves? Inhale 4 seconds-hold 7 seconds-exhale 8 seconds-pause-repeat. Calms mind/nervous system, regulates breathing, balances emotions.
2. Broadway Tip: A student of mine from Mama Mia uses Bananas to combat nerves. Swears they are beta blockers & calms her before a performance.
3. Lay off the perfume & cologne. Smell is the scent of memory. You may smell like a bad one to someone else.
4. Confidence Tip: It is not what we “are” that keeps us from reaching our goals but what we “think” we are NOT.
5. Voice Tip: The Larynx/voice-box is a muscle. The more tense the muscle the higher pitched your voice will be. Massage & warmth help it relax.
6. Follow Up Tip: A hand written thank you note carries a lot of weight in a cyber age of emails & texts. I know folks who save them in a file.
7. Prep Tip: Before that big meeting or interview, visit the location ahead of time. Know your way before the big day.
8. Confidence Tip: We can’t focus on a negative thought & a positive one at the same time. You have to pick. It’s a choice to think positive.
9. Performance Tip: If you believe, the audience will believe. This goes for acting, selling, persuading, educating, inspiring or motivating.
10. Australian Study: Gum chewing associated with higher alertness, reduced stress & anxiety, greater performance on multi-tasking activities! (but chew right before NOT during!!!).
11. Confidence Tip: “Confidence comes not from always being right, but from not fearing to be wrong.”- Peter T. Mcintyre.
12. Voice Tip: Avoid dairy products before a speech or meeting. Coagulation occurs around vocal chords & makes you want to clear your throat. (Also coats your tongue).
13. Confidence: the sureness of feeling that you are equal to the task at hand. Practice & preparation are the magic bullets that can kill fear.
14. Psychologist Stuart Brody believes the hormone Oxytocin gives a calming effect in public speaking anxiety. Sex=Oxytocin for up to a week!
15. NASA study shows spiders can’t spin webs while on caffeine – may be an indicator to limit caffeine prior to an interview, audition, or speech.
16. Performance Tip: Tension Headache? Rub your earlobes! This acupressure trick clears your head & dulls pain above the neck.
17. Motivation Tip: Ditch the sunglasses on the way to that interview or audition. Light stimulates neurotransmitters which increase motivation.
18. Image Tip: Ditching the sunglasses will also prevent the dreaded “Opti-indentus” – those ugly indentations on the sides of your nose.
Patricia Stark is a Media Trainer and Public Speaking Coach & CEO of Patricia Stark Communications Inc. Her clients include: OWN The Oprah Winfrey Network, Bill & Giuliana Rancic: “Ready for Love” NBC new series prep, BET’s 106 & Park cast re-launch, Fuse TV/ Fuse News Team, Style Network, E! News, VH1, MTV, Logo/Viacom, Discovery /TLC Talent Development, Martha Stewart Omnimedia and hundreds of on-air guest experts with appearances on CNN, Fox, The Today Show, CBS This Morning, CNBC, Bloomberg, Nate Berkus, HGTV, Tyra Banks, A&E, PBS, & WebMD.
Patricia is a faculty member teaching acting classes at Actors Connection at the Film Center in New York City and has been a faculty member at the American Medical Association’s annual Health Communicators Conference. Patricia is a member of the Screen Actors Guild, and the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists.