Public speaking has become a vital skill. Even if your job doesn’t involve presentations and speeches, it’s important to know how to communicate your ideas and be heard. Don’t know how to become good at public speaking? Here are some tips that can help.
As a public speaker, your voice is an essential asset. The best way to enhance your voice is to practice diaphragmatic breathing—also known as belly breathing. Proper breathing will prevent you from running out of breath in the middle of a sentence.
Diaphragmatic breathing allows you to control the tone, pitch, and volume of your voice. To ensure that you don’t feel breathless due to speech anxiety, put your hand on your abdomen and inhale while counting to 10. Then, exhale slowly and count to 10. Don’t forget to breathe with your belly when you’re on stage—whether in-person or virtually.
Your body language is comprised of your gestures, facial expressions, and body movement. Here are some tips to ensure confident body language while speaking:
Stand straight: If you’re standing, stand straight with your chest out and shoulders back.
Get in the power position: If you feel stressed before your speech, stand in a power pose for two minutes before entering the room or walking on stage.
Use facial expressions: Your expressions should correspond to your message. If you’re talking about an upbeat topic, smile and exude positively; if you’re talking about a difficult topic, use your face to exude emotion.
Delivery is everything when it comes to public speaking. If you have strong body language but poor delivery, your message won’t reach the audience as intended. Try these techniques to improve your delivery:
Speak conversationally: Maintain a conversational style when communicating an idea. Talking too fast or too slowly will confuse your audience, and they may not understand your point in its entirety.
Take short pauses: When you pause, the audience has time to process and comprehend what you’re saying.
Don’t use filler words: Filler words like ah, um, and so reduce your credibility and distract your audience. Remember to pause more often instead of using fillers.
Improve Public Speaking with a Professional Speaking Coach
Want to become a stronger public speaker? I can help. I’m an experienced public speaking coach, presentation expert, and communication trainer. I provide virtual public speaking coaching to help people become more confident communicators. To learn more, send an email to Hello@StevenDCohen.net.