Are you a speedy talker?
I've always had a pretty peppy cadence to my speech, and spending the past 10 years in NYC has only made me sound more caffeinated.
Normally this isn't problem... unless I get nervous.
And unfortunately, even public speaking coaches occasionally get nervous when speaking in public.
This used to be a big problem for me.
If I forgot to take a couple minutes to meditate before a presentation, my normal trot of a speech pattern would quickly turn into a frantic gallop.
Suddenly, I'd be flying through slides, tripping over words, and, worst of all, losing my audience.
I was in denial about this for a while.
I thought, "So, I talk fast. What's the big deal? People like an energetic presentation!"
And that's partly true.
People do like an energetic presentation... but only if they can understand it.
I was forced to fully embrace this idea one spring when I almost drove off the side of...
Welcome back to our on-going blog series:
Let’s start out our 1st week of Speak Masterfully Speaking Tips with a brazenly simple suggestion:
If you know you struggle with speaking to a crowd of people, then don’t speak to a crowd of people.
Speak to one person.
Imagine you have a good friend sitting in the back row—someone nonjudgemental. The kind of friend you’d have no problem inviting over even if your place were a mess. Make this a private conversation between the two of you.
Allow your eyes to take in the whole room, but keep the intention of a private conversation. Focus in on the one or two people smiling and nodding.
Not only will speaking to one person calm your nerves, it will create a feeling of intimacy with the audience.
Apply this advice to the writing of your piece as well as the delivery. To quote James Joyce, ...