Talk about the things you know

Someone once asked me, “When you deliver a speech, how do you remember it?” Hmm that’s a good question.

I’m a member of Toastmasters. I joined in 2018 because I wanted to learn how to speak confidently, deliver speeches and frankly, I was curious to know what it was all about. Since then, I’ve made many presentations, learning more about myself and how to deliver a speech each time.

If you knew me, you’d know that I’m not very coordinated. I can’t follow the steps in a rumba. I get lost in an aerobics routine and I can’t coordinate slide notes with the slides on a screen. That’s why, I need tricks to remember a speech! Here’s how I do it.

The best things to talk about are things you know about. I make it a rule to only talk about what I know. I dig for the experiences I’ve had, the knowledge I’ve gained or how I feel about a subject. That way, if I forget a point, I can make it up as I go and no one can wrong me for it.

I make it about me. Talk about yourself. Who do you know better? For example, if the topic of my speech is leadership styles, then the perspective I take to talk about them is my own. I’ve had some experience in a leadership position and talking about my own style in context of other styles makes it a whole lot easier.

I give myself some prompts. Write out the key points you want to cover. These act as thought starters to keep the flow of your presentation going. I recently gave an ice-breaker presentation — an introduction to me. I talked about my experience and challenges on a 73 km backwoods camping trip. The trip was excruciatingly hard on me, but I survived. I framed my story in the form of lessons learned:

1. Train.
2. Have the right equipment.
3. Stay nourished.

These three points were my thought starters; my cues to what was coming next.

I keep my points to a minimum. Stick to three or four messages. By doing this, you’ll avoid rambling on and you’ll keep your message focused on the topic. You’ll also keep your audience’s attention!

And there you go! My secret to remembering my speech in four easy points! Now give it a go!

Published by hdiane2

Quietly practicing something that brings me enjoyment.

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