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Glossophobia (Fear of Public Speaking)

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What is Glossophobia

Glossophobia is a type of anxiety disorder, referring to a strong fear (or phobia) of public speaking. Those who suffer from glossophobia may experience a quick onset of physical symptoms when faced with speaking in front of an audience – even an audience of just a few people.
Glossophobia is categorized as a social phobia, similar to stage fright. Although the symptoms of glossophobia and stage fright overlap quite heavily, many who suffer from glossophobia may find other social situations, like meeting new people, or performing tasks in front of a crowd, completely normal. Yet when it comes time to speak in front of a group of people, they experience a sometimes overwhelming stress response.

How many people suffer from Glossophobia?

There are numerous surveys and studies into glossophobia, all with the consensus that Fear of public speaking is a very common affliction.

One survey found that the fear of public speaking affected 40% of Americans, the second most common fear behind ‘snakes’. Other surveys found that Glossophobia actually affects even larger percentages of the population; with one survey concluding that 75% of people suffer from some form of glossophobia at some point.

What are the symptoms of Glossophobia?

Symptoms and severity of glossophobia vary from case to case, as some may experience light side effects, but for others, they may be debilitating. The most common symptoms of glossophobia include:

  • Sweating
  • Trembling
  • Rapid heartbeat
  • Nausea
  • Shortness of breath
  • Muscle tension
  • Dizziness
  • Dry mouth

Where can I learn more about Glossophobia?

We recommend the following resources to learn more about glossophobia & fear of public speaking:

  1. Overcoming Glossophobia (Fear of Public Speaking)
  2. Glossophobia and Me: How I Overcame My Fear of Public Speaking
  3. Overcoming Stage Fright: A Complete Guide