Though every individual finds themselves in a unique position on this journey, I believe there are two main stages of development. One is the transition from fear and anxiety to confidence when standing and speaking to a group of people. The other is the cultivation of craft and technique for maximum impact. I hope here to provide a general foundation that will prove useful to anyone, regardless of where they are currently placed with their level of public speaking experience.
Eye contact can be daunting for many of us. There are, of course, many factors: your gender, age, emotional state and who youare speaking to all affect your inclination to make and sustain eye contact. However these varying scenarios impact our ability to lock eyes with another person, there is one, unchanging truth: eye contact is essential in building, strengthening and maintaining meaningful connection.
Some people call them filler words, others might know them as crutch words; irrespective of name, these are any sounds, words or entire phrases that does not contribute to the meaning of a sentence. Of course, there's nothing wrong with the odd one, even in public speaking. Chronically overused, however, they can become an annoyance to an audience and a severe hindrance to the clarity of your message.
A few summers ago, on a warm Saturday morning, I stood in the back garden of an elderly neighbour, having volunteered my assistance to, as she termed, "get back on top of it." Based on that description, I expected a routine experience. I imagined there'd be some grass to cut, some plants to water and … Continue reading How to Take Care of Your Brambles
People talk about them all the time: lightbulb moments, flashes of inspiration, those times where you have no choice but to (metaphorically) shout, 'Eureka!' (I've never heard anyone shout this for real, it'd probably be a bit weird if you did). I don't doubt that they happen. I'm pleased for people that say they've had … Continue reading Overcoming fear is like throwing a switch – a dimmer switch…
Some experiences with running have taught me an awful lot about leadership, humility and communication. Running is one of those things you either love or despise. You've either got a drawer filled with gear of the most garish colours, or you might be the sort of person to think twice about committing to a swift … Continue reading Leadership is a Marathon, not a Sprint