Business Letter: Nervous Mannerisms - Nervous Mannerisms

What Do You Do When You Are Nervous?Everyone has different reactions to nervousness. By being aware of your particular nervous mannerism, you can work to overcome them.Here are some common mannerisms exhibited when giving a speech.
Do you do any of them?

Bite your fingernails

Tap your feet

Wave your hands/arms

Play with your hair

Move around a lot

Speak too fast

Speak too slowly

Become stiff


Play with objects in pockets, etc.

Make strange facial expressions

Say “uh”, “uhm”

Tap on the table/podium

Repeat yourself

Breathe heavily



Pause inappropriately

Clam up/Become speechless

Shift your eyes

Move your head around

Gesture inappropriately


If you do any of the above, it can be distracting to your audience. Being aware of what you do is the first step to overcoming the habit. Watch a video of yourself, or have a colleague or friend watch you make a presentation and then give you feedback on your good and bad points. He/She can also point out if you are using any of the above nervous mannerisms.