What causes voice trembling/shaking when nervous? The other night I returned a phone call regarding a potential date with a new guy, and I could tell that my voice sounded slightly nervous for about the first minute or so of our conversation. I’m sure he noticed it too. Does anyone have any suggestions as to how to strengthen the vocal cords, or voice exercises to do? I’ve noticed this before with my voice (and in other people also) when nervous. It’s ironic that when I don’t like a guy romantically, my voice sounds fine, but when it may be someone that I might be interested in, sure enough, I sound nervous (just when I want to make a good impression)! Thanks for any help.
For me, the key thing is to make sure I’m breathing normally. When I get nervous, I tend to take shallow breaths and clench my diaphragm. This makes it hard to control air flow and that results in the trembling more than the vocal cords themselves. If I need to “reset” my breathing, coughing or taking a sip of water are useful distractions anytime. When you’re having a conversation with someone, let them do the talking for a bit while you get breathing back into a normal rhythm.
Sounding nervous isn’t always what you want, but it isn’t a guaranteed bad impression. Especially in a romantic situation, a little nervousness is a useful cue that someone is interested in you.
It probably falls under some type of anxiety disorder (maybe Social Anxiety Disorder?). It can happen when you feel like you have to “rise to the occasion”, such as meeting new people, public speaking, playing in an important sports match, taking an important test, etc. The primitive brain thinks it has to prepare to fight an enemy, so it does things to prepare your body like increase blood flow, rate of sweating, release adrenaline, etc. This can make your skin flush and sweaty and make your voice tremble and more high pitched.
If you have time to prepare, you can practice relaxation techniques to calm your body so it’s less likely to react that way. There are also some drugs you can take which can minimize those physical symptoms. But if you don’t have time to prepare, like the phone suddenly rings, you may have to take a break to calm yourself down.
This is why I only date people that I don’t like.
It’s not your vocal chords, it’s lack of self confidence. As you become more confident in the situation the nervousness subsides. Just remember that they are lucky to be talking to you.