Speak with Confidence – Beware Of Stilted Speech

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When starting out in public speaking it is advisable to write out your speech so it is fully thought through.  There is something that happens when you write your thoughts out on paper. It will help in being able to speak with confidence.

However, it’s human nature to “put stilts on” when you take pen in hand and thus to write artificially. For this reason it’s wise, after you’ve written your speech out, to translate it into a simple conversational style. Something that starts out, “It is contended by a considerable number of persons” looks real good on paper but it would certainly sound silly in front of an audience. How much more natural to stand up and say, “Now a great many people will tell you”

Review your work in that vein. Seek to make it conversational; make it sound natural, just the way you’d talk. Then you’ll be more comfortable and your audience will be more appreciative.

This doesn’t mean that all big words and unusual expressions should be eliminated. Just remember not to refer to “extinguishing the blaze” when you mean “putting out the fire,” because that’s affected and it sounds asinine. But if your vocabulary naturally includes unusual words as a matter of course, use them lest you create an impression of “talking down” to your audience.
Unusual words when properly and naturally used lend color and charm. It’s wise to keep them soft and sweet because you never know when you may have to eat them!

Written language is different to spoken language. The most effective style for public speaking is the conversational style. A conversational style is more natural and is easier for the audience to follow your speech. It also helps you to speak with confidence as the message is most important rather than fine sounding words for effective public speaking.

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