How to Improve Speaking Skills in 6 Simple Steps

There is nothing like a smile of satisfaction that flashes on one’s face on holding the conversation which makes him/her become the center of attraction in a group. In the company of unknown, it is quite natural to feel little nervous while taking those initial steps to start a conversation.  When there is the feeling of being nervous or over excitement we are bound to make mistakes while speaking. A shift in focus can be found towards becoming conscious of oneself, mumbling, fidgeting, jitters and the list goes on. This in later phases can lead to low confidence and low self-esteem.

So here we are going to focus on simple steps which can be imbibed with daily practice and improve speaking skills.

  • Clarity in Speech
  • Develop Flow
  • Pick topics of your interest
  • Develop Style
  • Daily Practice

Clarity in Speech

Be Clear! What exactly does clear mean? In conversation when you are replying to a point or starting the conversation there should not be any confusion in your mind. You can talk clearly when you are clear with your thoughts and know what exactly how you feel and think about it.

When your thoughts are clear then the talk should be

  • Be Direct and take responsibility for the meaning
  • Tone or pitch should call attention to yourself

While speaking presenting the facts in active voice as they are followed by your thoughts about it.

Conversation can be one to one or in a group. When the conversation is one to one based on the surroundings you can take a call on how high or low your voice has to be. In the case of a crowd, just to get the attention you can slightly modify the tone and pitch.

Develop Flow

Flow in speech is the comfort level with which you approach all topics. There are important aspects which determine this comfort level

  • Pace
  • Pause

The pace is the speed of the talk and pause is seconds which gives time to catch up with the talk for either person.

Flow in speech comes with the knowledge of the subjects. Conversation is always two-sided. What you talk, how you talk and when you talk depends on who is the listener. If the listener is a newbie to a subject then you might have to frame the talk in such a way that it is understandable by the person. In case the person is knowledgeable then you might use the technical jargon words to carry on the conversation. The pace matters a lot as it has to be compatible with the listener to follow. Hence pace and pausing matter a lot in conversation. It is better to speak slowly with pauses making it easier to the listener irrespective of whether the listener is a newbie to knowledgeable.

Pick Topics of Interest

It is quite natural to be passionate about the things around us. It might vary from greenery to butterflies to sports to cars. When you talk about interests you are bound to feel a bubble of enthusiasm which naturally makes you exude confidence and generate interest in people around you.

Develop Style

Speaking is just not the usage of words. It is the way it is put across the body language. The Style is a combination of words and body language used to put across your point. The way it is told with

  • Gestures
  • Humour
  • Facial Expressions
  • Story-Telling

Using the above you can make the conversation lively as it is bound to draw people. Best examples would be watching theater wherein artists modulate the voice with the situation and convey with their eyes and body language also.

For example, You come across a kid who has fallen from his/her cycle. You just bend down to get to his level and ask him “Are you hurt?” shows your concern and might get you a reply. The same when stood next to him and looking down and using the baritone voice you ask “Are you hurt?” will get you an unequivocal stare from the kid.

We, humans tend to read more to the tone and body language of how the message is conveyed rather than to the message itself.

Practice Daily

There are quite a few good orators who can just go out and talk without preparation. All of us not born with that, but this certainly is a skill which can be developed by spending few minutes daily. You can just pick and choose a topic as simple as noodles or coffee and talk for 30 seconds about what you know. Pause. Rephrase what you have just spoken and talk again working on the pace and pause. Similarly, you can slowly move to other steps and to subjects that you are passionate about.

The main criterion in speaking is whether it is a conversation wherein 2 or more people involved or is it just passing on the message. In both the cases, you have to make sure who the listener is what the situation is: is it a social gathering, official meeting or just a meet up with friends.

You can make an impact to anyone opposite if you talk in accordance with the listener means you connect with them with what they are looking for. It might be a need for entertainment, knowledge, comfort, acknowledgement etc.

In Today’s competitive world, Speaking Skill can be termed as a life skill as it is very much required in daily affairs either in personal or professional life. In other words, it is taking a step closer to knowing others and to be known by others.

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