Peter Urs Bender   Previous Page  |  Next Page

Vary Your Voice

Vocal variety is very important when you speak. Periodically
change your speed, pitch, and volume, going neither too fast
nor too slow. Do not mumble in a monotone. A deeper tone
signals more confidence than a high pitched one. Also, if you
catch yourself stumbling or not knowing what to say, slow
down and possibly even stop to catch your breath and collect
your thoughts. If you blank out or choke, just smile! Only
people with great self-confidence can smile, therefore the
audience will assume you know what you are doing!
     At the time you rehearse, practice using your voice to
emphasize certain words and phrases. You should train your
voice to deliver on its own so that your brain can concentrate
solely on the message.
     When we are nervous we tend to speak faster. Rapid flow
of words encourages shallow breathing. If you want to rein-
force an image of confidence, slow down. It is much easier for
you to breathe deeply when you donít speak too quickly. The
audience will also be impressed by the power you project.

Use Your Voice for Emphasis

Slow down and lower your volume to a near whisper if you
want to catch the audienceís attention for a point you are
making. However, they should still be able to hear you. This
change will signal the listeners that you are about to make a
point and they must listen more closely.
     You must show a contrast in volume in order for this to
work properly. To capture and, if necessary, recapture the
audienceís attention, pause at strategic intervals for a mo-
ment. Be silent, take a couple of deep breaths and make eye
contact with key members of the audience before proceeding.

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