Are you making life hard for yourself?

Do you get nervous before presentations and speeches?

Do you get flustered when you stumble or lose your place?

Do you worry that, despite all your hard work, people don’t get your message clearly?

If your answer is a resounding No, congratulations.

If you said Yes, or even Maybe, let’s dig a little deeper into how you prepare your speeches and presentations.

  • Do you write in silence?
  • Do you judge your script by how it looks on the page?
  • Does your script look like a page from a book when it’s finished?
  • Do you find, under pressure, it’s hard to say some of the words and sentences?
  • Do you find yourself speaking in a monotone?
  • Do you like to put a lot of text on slides?

If you ticked three or more boxes, you really are making life way harder than it needs to be.

Here are three quick tips:

  1. Speak your words out loud (really loud) before committing them to paper.
  2. Write shorter sentences. Turn commas into full stops and eliminate conjunctions.
  3. Experiment with how few, rather than how many, words you put on slides.

If these tips help you, you’ll find more like them in TalkitOut: From Fears to Cheers. (Paperback $20, E-book $10).

This post is taken from Podium’s March Newsletter. If you are not already getting a copy, you’ll find a subscription box on this page.

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