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I remember John and Kate Gosselin from their first documentary on the Discovery Channel. This was before they agreed to be the focus of a reality show – a decision that resulted in the recent unfortunate news that’s dominating the entertainment headlines. They seemed like a nice couple doing an amazing job despite a challenging lifestyle.
Before “John & Kate Plus Eight” Kate worked a couple shifts a week as nurse. John, in my opinion, did a great job handling the kids on his own given that he also held down a full time job. They were crammed in a small house, their financial future was uncertain and both parents were overtired and over-stressed.
You have a lot to say and are enthusiastic about what you have to say, yet you’re lacking one key ingredient – no one can understand you because you mumble. You may mumble and not even be aware of it – although a good indicator is when people are always asking you to repeat yourself because they didn’t hear or understand what you said.
Mumbling is caused by a number of things such as trying to talk too fast, not opening your mouth all the way while speaking, blocking your mouth, not speaking loud enough, or having a dry or sore mouth. Unless there is something physically wrong with your mouth, the key to dealing with mumbling is practice. Just like people can control their stuttering with practice, a little effort and awareness goes a long way with mumbling. Here are two easy ways to deal with mumbling.
Read out loud:
In 2002, I took an acting class. I had always wanted to be on TV or in a movie and I figured that this would be a good place to start. What I didn’t realize at the time is how acting and public speaking can work together – the skills that you learn in one can help you in the other.
To be a good actor, you need to memorize your lines and make the audience believe that you are the person you’re pretending to be. To be a good speaker, you need to speak clearly and effectively to get your point across. Can you see how one can help with the other?
I’ve recently attended a few events where I’ve met a number of folks who are “in transition”. Several of them have been looking for work for while and some of them have recently begun their search. It’s a tough market out there so in order to be successful, you need every tool and every advantage you can get. I’ve posted a number of tips on these topics but I felt this would be a good time to organize them in a way to help job seekers through out the process.
Make sure your experience and qualifications are strong:
As I mentioned in another post, I attended the 30th anniversary of the Toastmasters club I used to belong to last night. While you can outgrow the format that Toastmasters uses, you can never outgrow learning and at each Toastmasters meeting I’ve been to (with only a couple exceptions), I’ve learned something useful. Sometimes I learn something new about communication while other times I’ll learn about something unrelated to speaking through one of the speeches that night. Speeches are a true gem because everyone has a story to tell (a point I emphasize in the classes I teach). So have an open mind when you’re listening to someone talk.
When I first started using Twitter, I knew very little about the service or the benefits of using it. Now that I’ve used it a bit, I’ve finally figured out how to do the things I want to accomplish with the network. But I’ve also developed a number of pet peeves about the way some other folks use the service that I feel take away from the overall benefit to everyone. Some people are trying so hard to milk the benefits of the service that they’re missing out on the real purpose (and benefit) of the service – making real connections.
Have you ever met anyone who is soft spoken? Are you soft spoken? One of the biggest challenges facing people who occasionally speak is the volume of their voices. Speak too loudly and you come across as too aggressive. Speak too softly, and you come across as too weak. Many executives (as well as regular folks) struggle with the latter – they’re soft spoken so when they address their teams, they appear weak.
Getting the right volume is tricky for a lot of folks. It depends on so many factors such as:
- The size and layout of the room.
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Please take a look at my latest e-book, "The Ultimate Guide to Effective Theme Meetings." This 62 page e-book contains tips as well as 10 ready to use theme meeting kits. Each kit contains everything from the invitation to planning the food & decor to enough table topics for up to 30 participants. And if you act fast, you can get it while it's still on sale.
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