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7 Secrets to Speaking With Confidence

The Huffington Post The Huffington Post 12/11/2015 Jonathan Li
LONG LIFE © Shutterstock LONG LIFE

Is there a shortcut to becoming a confident speaker?
Oh yes!
I sat down with voice coach, Caroline Goyder. Her TEDx talk, The surprising secret to speaking with confidence has over half a million views.
To become more confident in public speaking, apply these seven secrets from Caroline:
1. Prepare for the best and the worst
Both Caroline and I were opening speakers at TEDx events. The audience clearly needed one more cup of coffee. We didn't take it personally. Instead, we interacted with the audience. Caroline said, "Put your hand up if you know where your diaphragm is." This activity won people's attention.
To own the stage, learn how to deal with good and bad responses. If people are engaging, say "You're clearly engaged in that one." If people are tired, say "I can see you need more energy."
2. Know when to close your mouth
Most speakers don't fully breathe in. Close your mouth so you remember to inhale. You'll feel more relaxed and have more time to think about what to say.
3. Smell a lovely smell
When we are nervous about public speaking, we hold our breath. Imagine yourself in a beautiful garden surrounded by lovely flowers. Take a relaxed breath and feel more confident.
4. Sing your favourite song
Singing warms up your voice and boosts your energy. It doesn't matter what songs you sing. Have fun. Just make sure you sing before coming to the speaking venue.
5. Talk to your audience as friends
In my TEDx talk How to speak with confidence, I share the importance of visualizing the audience as your friends. Don't give a big speech. Have a conversation.
6. Look your best
Confident speakers don't just sound great; they look great. Caroline had her hair and makeup properly done. I put on my best suit and wore a cool pocket square.
Wear your best clothes and look smart.
7. Practice with feedback
Practice doesn't make perfect; practice with feedback makes great improvement.
Caroline got coaching six weeks before her TEDx talk. She did two rehearsals at the Academy of Dramatic Art. She did TEDx rehearsals and got feedback from other speakers.
I practiced my talk at Toastmasters and got useful feedback from live audiences. With quality feedback, we delivered our best TEDx talks.
Use these seven speaking secrets so you will speak with confidence.
If you would like a free eBook on How To Get on TEDx Talks, click here.

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