Whether a professional speaker, a salesperson, a socialite, or even just speaking at a friend’s wedding, at some point everyone needs to speak to a group of people. Having the right tools available and putting the following advice into daily practice will greatly improve those speaking skills. Here is how to become a better orator in everyday life.
Have faith in your words
Nobody is going to believe someone who doesn’t even believe themselves. Not having faith in what we are saying is a recipe for disaster in front of a group of people. The topic being spoken about must be well researched and concrete in our minds and on the notes before us. Especially if there are going to be questions at the end. There is no way to be rhetoric without having confidence in ourselves and what we are saying, the audience will see right through us.
Have interest in what you are speaking about
Ever sat through a talk done by someone who is bored? Downright unpleasant. A good orator needs to be thoroughly interested in the topic they are speaking about. Don’t ever try to customize the speech to please the audience, because not everyone can be pleased anyway. Instead, the speaker needs to mold the speech to suit their interests and own style of speaking. If the speaker is interested, the audience will find them interesting.
Don’t neglect the mirror
We have all heard the term that practice makes perfect and this is no exception. While it might feel silly at first, speaking in front of the mirror is the best practice for getting used to public speaking. It allows us to take in our mannerisms and inflections and reflect upon them to make changes if necessary. It also starts to slowly break away that feeling of being embarrassed and the anxiety that comes with talking in front of strangers.
Again, the more practice the better. Write essays, fun speeches, short stories, or anything else that feels right. The aim here is to keep the mind active with words. After all, words are what we are talking about here. The more it’s done, the more natural it will feel, making the next speech a breeze to write.
Make eye contact
A good speaker will always engage with the audience through eye contact. It’s one of the best ways to keep the audience interested and shows how confident the speaker is. An orator who only looks down at the notes and does not engage with the audience will come across as timid and possibly even rude.
Focus on posture
Keeping good posture is the final step. A slouching body or one that is too tense will have the audience losing interest or feeling uncomfortable. Always remember that the listeners are taking in all of us. Humans read a lot from body language, so having the right stance is imperative. The right posture should be standing straight but relaxed. Hands not in the pockets, but freely available for hand gestures and switching notes. Depending on the event, walking around to different parts of the stage is also greatly acceptable and helps to keep the audience engaged.
Bringing these tips into everyday life will help even the most hesitant speaker to find their niche.