Today you have to stand in front of several senior members of staff and present your proposal. Suddenly your nerves get the better of you. Sweating palms. Blushing cheeks. Stuttering. Yelp!

If you suffer with public speaking anxiety it can be really difficult to soothe your nerves. Working in PR, there will be occasions when you will need to get out of your comfort zone. As a young PR professional, here are my five top tips to overcoming your public speaking jitters.

1 Practice makes perfect
It may be cliché, but it is true! There’s no point reading through your notes 15 minutes before you’re due to present. Find time to rehearse to yourself in front of a mirror, as well as someone you trust, who will give you honest feedback.

2 Feed your brain
Another cliché: breakfast is the most important meal of the day. You may not feel like eating prior to your public speech, however it’s important to do so! Without breakfast you are effectively running empty, like trying to start the car with no petrol.

3 Arrive early
Give yourself plenty of time and arrive early at the venue to get comfortable with your surroundings. This is the perfect opportunity to make sure technology won’t let you down, take account of potential distractions, as well as relax ahead of the presentation.

4  Believe in yourself
Quit telling yourself that you’re rubbish at public speaking! Instead, have self confidence. If you have followed all the previous steps then you are very well prepared, so remind yourself of that.

5  Smile!
Smiling is contagious. Not only will it help you relax but it will also help your audience and makes you look friendly and confident.