Today I will be talking about how to be more articulate and learning to speak to anyone, anywhere. So what does being articulate really mean? Being articulate is having the ability to speak eloquently, fluently, and coherently! Whether it be job interviews, a presentation, or meeting someone new, we all want to make that great impression! Our ability to communicate effectively and clearly is super important. Being able to clearly convey ideas, paint a picture, tell a story, and use complex words correctly is not a skill to be overlooked! Unfortunately, not all of us are naturally blessed with the gift of being a captivating orator but thankfully it is something you can work on.
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So let's get into it!
1. Record Yourself
The first thing you'll want to do is record yourself speaking around a paragraph or passage of 5-8 sentences! Try to be as natural as possible as if you are speaking to a co-worker or classmate. When you listen back to it, make a list of the things you want to change whether it be your cadence or pitch. Be aware of the things you want to work on! No need to overanalyze yourself, our personal quirk when speaking make us special! Just focus on the things that can interfere with coherent speech such as mumbling and adding too many filler words.
Mispronouciating words are nothing to be ashamed of! Working on pronunciation and especially of complex words is a lifelong journey so make it fun! As a starter, make a list of words that you tend to trip on and practice your pronunciation daily for a few minutes. Try to incorporate these words a bit more in your daily communication until you get comfortable with it!
Furthermore, try to actively diversify your vocabulary through reading more, listening to podcasts, and downloading dictionary apps! Many of these apps will send you a new daily word that you can learn how to pronounce and eventually work into your daily vocabulary.
3. Monitor Your Speed
Monitoring your speed when you talk is essential! Have you ever spoken to someone who knew how to slow down their words and pick up their speed as well? It's super engaging! Changing your speed when you talk is essential to communicate efficiently and captivatingly! When we get nervous it may seem impossible to slow down but just take a deep breath or a sip of water and try again. Realize that people are listening to you for a reason, they want to hear what you have to say! There's no reason to rush through your words.
Slow down your words when you are trying: describe something, build a narrative, or increase focus
Increase your tempo when you are trying: get people excited, introduce something, or get a point across
4. Volume and Pitch
Your volume and pitch are important! Being too loud or too quiet, too high-pitched and squeaky and low-pitched and deep can hurt our ability to communicate. You don't need to speak in a way that's uncomfortable to you but try to be clear and coherent when you talk. Our volume and pitch tend to change to emphasize power words such as when describing things or making a point.
For example, if you say "I saw a huge spider and I was scared", it won't generate much interest or reaction but if you say, "I saw a huge (increase volume and elongated the pronunciation) spider", it tells a different story! Be aware of these things when you speak and try to emphasize and alter your volume and pitch only on words you want to bring attention to.
5. Be Confident!
Confidence is key! Once you nail down all the basics; pronunciation, speed, pitch, and volume- you'll need to work on your confidence. Try to talk aloud more with your new techniques to get comfortable! Don't be afraid to strike up some more small talk with your co-worker or when you're running errands. The more you speak, the more comfortable you'll become, and the more articulate you'll be! Record yourself periodically to see your improvement over time as well.
Download a dictionary app to help with expanding vocabulary and improving pronunciation.
Listen to podcasts to hear how professional speakers articulate and control their tone, pitch, volume, cadence, etc.
Study different languages! When learning a foreign language, we are also forced to gain a deeper understanding of our own native tongue.
Make eye contact and smile when you speak- it will help you appear comfortable, confident, and engaged!
Don't be afraid to use your hands when describing something! It adds an extra element to your story and can captivate the audience.
Would you describe yourself as articulate? Do you have issues with speech? Will you be using any tips from the list above? Let me know in the comments below!
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– X ♡