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Structure your speech for maximum impact

“Tell them what you’re going to say.  Say it.  Then tell them what you said”
And that is so true!!  We have such short attention spans.  And so do audiences.  If we want to make a point that will stay with an audience after they leave the room, we have to repeat and reinforce it throughout the presentation.  
Introduce your well defined theme.  Present that theme.  And repeat it to conclude.

You will have given your audience a great chance of remembering it.

Online Speech Bank

Online Speech Bank
Index to and growing database of 5000+ full text, audio and video (streaming) versions of public speeches, sermons, legal proceedings, lectures, debates, interviews, other recorded media events, and a declaration or two.”
The website can be searched by subject, such as Christian rhetoric, movie speeches and 9-11 speeches.  There are  over “200 short audio clips illustrating stylistic figures of speech ranging from alliteration to synecdoche. Clips are taken from speeches, movies, sermons, and sensational media events and delivered by politicians, actors, preachers, athletes, and other notable personalities.”  Check out the “100 most significant American political speeches of the 20th century, according to 137 leading scholars of American public address… Find out who made the cut and experience the power of rhetorical eloquence in this provocative list of “who’s who” in American public address.”

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Mind Mapping your Speaking Presentation

You have a speaking presentation to make.  You have been given a topic or have chosen one and there are a multitude of ideas buzzing around in your head. Or maybe there is a frightening LACK of ideas! Or maybe you can think of no way to organise those thoughts into something memorable.  A mind map will help you.

Five tips for overcoming public speaking nerves

Your mouth is dry, heart palpitating, and knees knocking. You go into panic, facing a dreaded public speaking assignment.It doesn’t have to be so.These five tips will give you some strategies to overcome those symptoms and have the butterflies flying in formation.1. Deep breathing will pull in oxygen. Adrenalin, secreted to help you deal with the fear brought on by little doubts, causes breaths to become shallow, or causes you to hold your breath. Deep breathing will help your brain work to capacity, and forcing the slower pace will quell the panic.2. Bluff. Stand tall, with shoulders back and chest out. Smile. Even though you don’t feel happy or confident, do it anyway. You will look confident and your body will fool your brain into thinking it is confident. This really works!!Bluff – body and smile3. Keep you mouth and throat hydrated. Plan to keep a drink on hand while you are speaking., though this sounds impossible. Visualising how you will use it if you need it, and calling up the audacity to do such a thing will carry across to your attitude as you take your place to speak, placing your glass just where you need it to be.4. Adrenalin sends the blood rushing to the fight/flight centres of your brain at the base of the skull. Place your hand on your forehead and press gently on the bony points. This will bring the blood to the parts of the brain that need it to present your speech best.5. Know you are prepared. Obviously this depends on actually being prepared, so take every opportunity in the days leading up to the speech to prepare your material. Be familiar with the structure of the presentation, and the ideas to use. Memorise the most important parts, and the parts you are frightened of forgetting. I would memorise the opening of the speech and in the moments before presenting it, would reassure myself that I knew that part, and that would lead on to the rest. It worked!!

To overcome the fear of public speaking, you need to understand the underlying causes

Once you can identify the causes that are underlying your public speaking nerves and fear, you can choose the strategies you need to build your confidence, use the fear and present successfully.

Most people suffer from some fear of public speaking.  The survey that identified it as America’s number one fear was accurate then and remains so today. But the causes of that fear can differ from person to person.

One of the most important steps towards overcoming the fear of public speaking is to identify the things in your life that have created the fear and then choose the strategies that relate to those causes and that will conquer the fear and allow you to harness it to enhance your presentations and speeches, not destroy them.

So let’s list some of the factors that underlie the fear of public speaking and see which ones apply to you.  

Read the article

Public speaking success tip: the value of eye contact

Eye contact is a wonderful tool to convey sincerity.  It is also useful to help you to stay aware of how the audience is reacting to you.  Stay aware and adapt by changing your presentation style and content to keep their attention and interest.