Being comfortable on camera isn't inherent.
It is actually inherently uncomfortable to talk to a little red light instead of a human who can give you instant feedback.
There's actual science behind the reason you don't like how you look or sound on camera. When you see your face on camera, you experience cognitive dissonance and you aren't used to seeing the non-mirrored image of yourself.
When you hear your own voice on video, you cringe because your recorded voice sounds very different from what you hear when you speak.
Fake it until you make it.
The only way to become more comfortable on camera is with practice. Until then, you can avoid showing how uncomfortable you really are by avoiding these tell-tale signs that show your nerves on camera.
There's some very interesting science behind why your voice sounds so different to you when you hear it recorded.
It is also a physical indicator of anxiety or stress. So if public speaking makes you nervous, the first giveaway will be your voice. That 'lump in your throat' you feel is a real thing. Your vocal cords tighten when you are nervous, which usually makes your voice raise higher in pitch. That shaky sound you feel or hear in your voice is also explained by those tightening vocal cords.
A simple way to avoid it is to do exercises that help relax your vocal cords:
Roll your neck and shoulders to release tension.
Exhale several times with a deep sound in your chest.
Find your diaphragm and practice deep breathing with your hand on your belly.
Say "Lee-Ly-Lo-Lum" slowly several times with a deep voice
The 'deer in headlights' look is a real thing. When someone is uncomfortable, you can usually tell by their lack of blinking.
It's something you don't normally think about (and shouldn't!), but it can definitely make you look out of your element.
The same relaxation exercises that can help with your voice can help with this too. Just being aware of this nervous tick can help you be conscious of your blinking. If you consciously slow your speaking, your blinking will increase too.
Body language is another great indicator of how you are feeling on camera.
You want to always project an 'open' body. This means not crossing your arms or lowering your chin. These simple things can 'close off' your body and unconsciously make your audience feel like you are unwelcoming.
Another question I get asked a lot is ...
What do I do with my hands??
The answer to this is a question: HOW DO YOU USE YOUR HANDS IN PERSON?
I tell clients if you are a hand-talker (Like me! 🙋🏻♀️), then use your hands. It is comfortable for me to talk with my hands and if I don't, my voice becomes robotic and less animated.
If you aren't a natural hand-talker, don't try to be! When you try to choreograph what hand motions you will use and when, it makes you look robotic and less animated.
The moral of the story: be yourself!
That's who people are tuning in to see!