How to Speak Confidently- 101
A ship is safe in the harbour but thats not where its meant to be.
They say speaking is an art, are you born with it or can you inculcate?. I always think anyone can speak well and its not something to be scared of.
However, if you have felt fearful, conscious, aware and not confident if you had to speak during an interview, presentations and introduce yourself to a stranger or in professional circles- this is for you.
Here are 5 things to think about:
10,000 hour rule-This one is no brainer, so speak whenever possible. Start with speaking at home, simple basics and don't worry whether its perfect or not. When you feel you are doing okay without too much mumbling and fumbling, move on to scenarios. It could be giving an interview, talking to a friend about a movie you watched etc. You get the gist, just keep on talking.
Listening- To speak well, you must also know to listen. In any language how we speak isn't about knowing the language, good speaking is casual, informative and impactful. Listen to the likes of Simon Sinek or Elizabeth Gilbert if you are trying to speak confidently in English. Here's a list of ten best motivational speakers.
Fake it till you make it- You can be scared and you can still volunteer to speak up in a meeting or present in a webinar. Being afraid keeps you alert and even the most professional of speakers will tell you that they are still nervous before hitting the stage. So fake that you are confident, smile when you speak , stop jittering or moving or biting your nails and know that every public figure has learned by practice to handle the jitters and so will you. To know more, hear this video
Bring in your stories and experiences- I think there are two ways to capture the attention of your audience- use numbers in your presentations because its something very specific and gets everyones attention. Follow the mention of the number with the research or the rationale behind the number. The next one is personal stories, everyone likes to be connected to a human (not a perfect machine). The vulnerability you share in bringing the personal stories, gets you more people to listen to than just quoting perfect scenarios and case studies.
Start to enjoy the experience- Theres the concept of ShuHa- Ri.. where you start something new by listening to the way you are taught and sort of mimicking it. At some point you climb up the stairs of progress and start looking at it from your perspective and at the end or last stage you can create your own rules. So in this context this means that you can really find your style and experiment with it.
If you like it so far, don't forget to watch the video
The bottomline is that you need to get comfortable with yourself, build your confidence by reading, listening and trying to find your own style and most important of all get rid off the fear and know that everyone starts somewhere.
For you its today :)