How To Feel Confident On Camera
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Learn strategies to build your confidence on camera. If you're nervous when speaking to a camera or recording a video then this video is for you! I teach you how to overcome your fear of filming with easy strategies. Enjoy this Explearning lesson!

In the age of social media, everything gets documented and broadcast. We don’t just post images, we post videos. We are no stranger to InstaStorying and YouTubing and sometimes it seems like no one is camera shy anymore! Perhaps some of you want to be doing more filming for fun or for your business but are too anxious on camera to even bear the thought. If you want to build confidence on camera, this post is for you! Here are my three strategies (and then some) for getting confident in front of a camera. 

(1) Speak on cam…no recording!

Sometimes we need to muster the courage to do something that takes us so far out of our comfort zones. It is much better to take baby steps in the right direction than entirely avoiding that which scares us the most. For many of us, that #1 fear is public speaking or some form of it: stage fright, communication apprehension, or speaking on camera. This step is intended to help you build up toward sitting in front of the camera without making you run in the other direction as soon as someone (or yourself) points the camera in your direction. Start with being in front of the camera in a position comfortable to you either sitting or standing. Make sure that the camera is not on for this step. You simply want to get a feel for what it is like to be staring into the camera for prolonged periods of time without cringing or flinching. Once you speak comfortably and without any hesitation it is time for step two.

(2) imagine you’re talking to your best friend 

Step two requires a bit of imagination. Here, I want you to imagine you are speaking to an audience of people who lift you up and make you feel warm and fuzzy inside. You can think of it as though you’re having a conversation with your best friend or spouse. The idea here is to relax you and make your on-camera voice sound as authentic and genuine as possible. One way to do that is by treating the camera not so much as an inanimate and static object, but rather as a person. It sounds a bit wacky, but by doing so you’ll not only project your authentic speaking self, but you’ll also be much more relaxed and make fewer mistakes in the process. Notice how you’ll fumble over your words less. Channel the power of your imagination to think up the best possible audience for your InstaStory or YouTube video. 

(3) LOL

The third and final step is to laugh out loud (LOL)! I want you to laugh so that you feel it in the very core of your being. You know the kind of laughter that releases those endorphins, meanwhile also lowering cortisol and epinephrine (stress hormones). For those of us who struggle to laugh on cue, try priming yourself with a funny go-to joke, video, or memory that you can conveniently access. Here you can either (1) laugh before the camera starts rolling then turn the camera on and segue into your on-camera talking or (2) you laugh while the camera is recording, get the footage of your laughing then you continue into your talk. Either way is fine, just be sure that if you go with the first option, not to leave too much space between the laughter and time it takes you to film. Option two would lead to a smoother transition. You will notice that not only are you completely relaxed while speaking on camera but that you are no longer terrified! 

 Please note that it might take a few tries to get the knack for this exercise and overall increase in confidence in front of the camera. That will depend primarily on how camera shy you are going into this activity as well as how motivated you are to overcome this fear. Just be patient with yourself and know that everyone is different so do not compare yourself with other on-camera personalities. As always, strive to project your most authentic self. Don’t try to be a cookie-cutter image of some other online personality no matter how great their following or how many likes they have. You are you and to that you must be true (you’re welcome for the cheese factor).

Now it’s time for next steps…

After repeating this sequence of steps one through three here’s what to do next. 

i) Self-assessment:

By now you probably will have accumulated several clips (with or without the laughing sequence prelude). These are of high value to you because they will give you a benchmark on which you can based and track your progress! Have a look at your footage and notice first what you are doing well. Check your body language, volume, hand gestures, facial expressions, and tone of voice. It’s imperative that you be positive and non-judgmental with yourself. After you’ve noted (yes, take actual notes) on the positive aspects, then focus on the areas of improvement. I would phrase it as “areas of improvement” because we are a work in progress…every single one of us inhabiting this earth. Hold on to this information and review it before filming your next segment for whatever format you desire (YouTube, Instagram, Snapchat, etc.). Also, depending on your platform you’ll want to plan accordingly. For example, using a phone for InstaStorying as opposed to a camera on a tripod for YouTubing. I really encourage you to hold on to what you are doing well so that you can be sure to keep doing what you’re doing in future filming. In other words, don’t focus to much on the void (aka, what you’re not doing) so that you do not lose sight of what you are doing well. And I am certain that you are doing at least one thing really well as it is!

ii) Hold yourself accountable:

One way of getting into the habit of practicing is to find a way of holding yourself accountable. Now, because this is a practice exercise, you do not necessarily have to broadcast your work shopping all over social media but do find a way of establishing a routine. If you are able to make a schedule of practicing speaking on-camera every day or every week and adhering to that schedule, then all the power to you. Otherwise, you might want to start a secret YouTube channel or Instagram account that you either keep private or share with your inner circle only. The idea here is that you increase your filming frequency and hold yourself accountable for setting up a routine. You need practice and consistency in order to achieve your goals. 

Please remember…

Do not be overly critical or too harsh on yourself. Absolutely no one is perfect, particularly those who appear to be. We are all a work in progress. Be sure to keep some perspective. This is why you should always focus on the positive things you are doing and be kind to yourself. 

And lastly, please do not care what other people think of you. This type of thinking is counter-productive and downright harmful to our psyche and self-wroth. It’s just not worth your precious brain power. Think of how many hours in a day, year, lifetime people waste on negative thinking. You have better things to do (like ramping up your communication skills, right?) And when posting on social media, pay no mind to the haters (even though this requires a level of stoicism). With mindfulness and time, we get better at this. The people who are your friends love you for you and the people who become your audience will want to watch and listen to you. Now go out there and show the world how stellar a human being you are. 

Happy Explearning 🌠

About the Author and the Explearning Academy:

Mary Daphne is an expert in communication, executive interpersonal skills, and personal development. She is the founder of the Explearning Academy, a platform dedicated to helping individuals enhance their social fluency, boost their careers, and elevate their social game. Through immersive group coaching programs like the Executive Communication Lab and self-guided journeys, participants gain the social superpowers and career catapults they've been searching for. If you're ready to take your negotiation skills to the next level and connect with like-minded individuals, visit and explore the various plans available. Join the Explearning Academy community and unlock your full potential.

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