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Imagine this nightmarish scenario: A hapless, over-confident group of people, all pulling together in different directions towards a vague goal, with a leader that doesn’t have a clue where they’re supposed to be going, or the best way to get them there. Even the thought of organising a piss-up in a brewery is beyond them, let alone actually getting around to it. That’s right, it’s a badly prepared stag weekend. Why, what did you think I was talking about? So here we are in 2019, and it’s high time we got our annual review of the best stag weekend providers out there underway. I’m pretty confident that by this time next year the situation with travel into Europe will all […]
Wedding suits are another thing for us blokes to think about. Back in the day, your Great Uncle Jim wore the same clobber to every single wedding he ever attended, but times have changed, and so too has the expectancies of the blokes on that wedding guest list, to turn up to the church on time, as well as in fashion. We’re right in the 2016 wedding season, but you’ve got another year’s worth of weddings to attend, and you will need a different outfit and look for each one. And let’s face it, we’re all turning a bit girly, what with moisturisers, bronzers (don’t even lie about that one) and blow dry hair dos, so let’s turn to nature to “inspire” […]
“There are three things to aim at in public speaking: first, to get into your subject, then to get your subject into yourself, and lastly, to get your subject into the heart of your audience.” – Alexander Gregg I remember the first time I gave a best man speech. It was a disaster in so many ways. I was so nervous that I could barely hold my notes without my hands shaking which made it worse because people could see that. I wrote a speech that I genuinely thought was really funny, but at the all important punch lines, I got little or no laughs. Having all those eyes on me was very unnerving. As it went on, I just […]
We’re going to start by looking at the psychology of delivering speeches and understand why it is we get nervous speaking in front of others. I’m then going to show you how these nerves can be managed by preparing in the right way and developing what I refer to as your muscle memory. In sections 3 and 4 you’ll learn techniques employed by professionals to use your body language and voice to really engage the audience and build rapport. To finish, we’ll bring it all together and put your newly acquired skills into practice so that when showtime arrives, you’re really going to shine. Related posts: No related posts.
“There are only two types of speakers in the world. 1. The nervous and 2. Liars.” – Mark Twain So I mentioned in the introduction about my first speech. How my heart was racing. How I couldn’t concentrate. And I was shaking so badly that I could barely speak. What was happening was that my body was preparing itself for something called ‘fight or flight’. You may have heard of this before, it’s what happens when we get super stressed. In these circumstances, large amounts of hormones, including adrenaline, are released into our nervous systems. Our heart rate increases and our muscles become tense. Now what’s happening here is that your body is preparing itself. It’s giving you a temporary […]
The good news is, fear can be managed. And in many circumstances, it can actually be turned to your advantage. All that adrenaline that’s pumping round your can use that, you can use it positively. It’ll help you come across as more enthusiastic, or passionate. Traits that an audience like to see. So the good news is it can be managed. The bad news is, its going to take hard work and a time commitment if you are going to get on top of it. So I want to set your expectations now – this isn’t going to be easy and its going to involve you putting in a fair few hours to really, and really nail it. Fear […]
Some of the best presenters and speakers today make it look so easy, don’t they? It all seems so natural to them. I saw a Ricky Gervais do stand up not so long ago. He was telling jokes to an area full of people like he was in the pub. He makes it look like he’s having a chat. Steve Jobs often gets talked about. He stood up every time to tell us awesome new features on his Apple products. Again, he makes it look so easy. It’s like some dude just chatting to you. But you know what, don’t be fooled into believing that these guys are just naturals. Behind each of these presentations has been hours and hours of […]
Okay, so I’m jumping ahead a little bit here, but if you’re really going to nail this speech. And I mean give yourself the best possible chance of success, then you’re going to need to one thing really well, and that one thing is to engage the audience. That means throughout the speech you’re going to need to think about things like body language, your stance, your intonation when to pause, when to sound sincere and so on. But you know what – this is a lot to think about all at once – and you’re not superman right?! How are you going to do all of those things when you’re only focus is getting the words out? You just […]
Part of the reason people can get tongue-tied when speaking to an audience is that they’re not entirely sure what’s coming next. They may know roughly but not exactly. In these circumstances, the fear of tripping up can cause even further anxiety and then it becomes this self-fulfilling prophecy. You think you’re going to trip up and then you actually do. Having a strong muscle memory prevents this from happening. If you’ve developed strong muscle memory then the very worst that can happen, if that fear I was talking about earlier comes along, you’ll always be able to recite your speech. So your muscle memory is your auto-pilot. It’s the keeping the car on the road, it’s your safety net. […]
Let me ask you a question. Have you read your speech out loud yet? You may have read and re-read it in your mind but have you actually said it out loud? In my experience, it’s not uncommon for people to actually say it out loud for the first time on the day of the speech itself. In my opinion this is is too late. The reason it’s too late is because it often sounds very different when spoken publically than in your mind alone. The pronunciation of words is easier to say in your internal voice than your external. Word combinations that look fine on paper, can actually turn out to be tongue twisters in practice. So the first […]