Email The Goddess
Of Public Speaking
For Help With Your
Dear Goddess Of Public Speaking...
" My voice sort of trails off when I finish presentations and conversations... I'm not sure really where to end, how to end or if I should end... " " G.W., IT MANAGER
" End With A Bang, Not A Whimper "
"I'm not sure really..." and that is the problem G.W. You need to find what you are sure about, state it and then make a clear finale!
About 90% of my clients struggle with ending their presentation on a powerful, memorable high note. For some reason, it seems the opening and the guts get all the attention, while the ending is an apologetic tack on - 'oh yeah - sorry - this is the bit where I ask YOU for something..."
Western society often seems to struggle with letting go (finishing well) and asking for what they want (confident assertion).
Whoever is speaking at any given time, is the Leader of the Moment. And that includes one to one conversations as well as formal presentations. Listeners take their cue from the Speaker... otherwise how do they know when it's their turn to speak, when to ask a question or if its time to move on?
Even more significantly, how can listeners / clients trust what you are saying or follow your advice, if you don't appear to trust yourself? Your non verbal signals speak more powerfully than you.
"Trailing off" affects both the speaker and the listener, not to mention your career. In particular:
Your listeners look to you for cues as to what to do next. If you don't lead, someone else will take over.
Your message or conversation gets dissipated, lost in the melee of fading umms, ahhs and sad darting eyes. It is your ending, not your message that will get remembered unfortunately.
Your self confidence suffers when you finish on a hesitant quaver, reverberating through your voice to your inner core beliefs about your ability to get what you want and to be heard.
Before you structure your talk, decide on the purpose and outcome you want for you and your listeners. Being clear about the outcome and your purpose is VITAL to end well.
State your intended outcome at the beginning of your presentation. The rest will then flow in a smooth, logical manner toward that outcome and your listeners will join the dots and know what to expect. In other words, they will see the point if you spell the point out.
If you feel yourself meandering, just stop right there. Take a breath and look around. Take your cues from your listeners. Ask them if you are unsure: "Is that clear? Do I need to add anything else?" In other words, have a conversation with them.
Quite often, when people struggle with an ending, they have delivered a monologue, based on the assumption that they are solely responsible for delivering everything perfectly and they will be judged accordingly. It's a heavy burden... no wonder many of us start to falter at the end of a presentation / conversation.
Completion for 2011
Ending anything is about letting go. Easier said than done I know. Learn to "let go" of your words and trust they will be received with the good intent with which you send them. This is a good point on which to finish the last e-news for 2011.
2012's e-news will be delivered to your Inbox every first Tuesday of the month, beginning again in February. The theme for 2012 is learning how to let your body talk for you - less words and more action! Thanks for reading along with me and all the best for finishing everything well, including this year. Best wishes, Geraldine
JUST RELEASED: A Do It Yourself Program for nervous public speakers. The Confidence & Connection E-Workbook offers 39 pages of self paced, step by step, low cost learning. View the Sample Pages and listen to the MP3.
The first 5 subscribers of the December 2011 Cool, Calm & Connected enews to purchase a DIY copy online will also receive a 30 minute Free Your Inner Speaker Session, worth $65.00. "Confidence & Connection ebook is a wonderful and generous resource to refer back to. It brought greater awareness to what I was learning. Helpful for staying on track and practicing." Emelia, NATURAL THERAPIST
Rate between 1 and 10 how cool, calm and connected you feel:
When you speak and lead with natural ease and authenticity, you will be closer to 10. When you feel scattered, distracted or unconfident, you will be closer to 1.
What To Do: If you are above a 7 today, notice what's working well and keep doing it. Accept that daily variations in confidence and clarity are normal. If you are below a 7 today, listen to and practise the Inner Calm exercise. You can also download our 2 free A4 Posters of Inner Calm and the Calm Barometer for your wall.