Does public speaking feel outside of your comfort zone? With these public speaking tips you can powerfully impact your current and prospective life coaching clients!
You certainly don’t have to be a professional public speaker to be a successful life coach, but if you feel called to this extraordinary profession, public speaking is a great way to up your game.
Public speaking an excellent way to get in front of potential clients and, if you book paid speaking engagements, to earn extra income as a life coach.
Honing your public speaking skills can even help you speak more confidently and eloquently in one-on-one or small group coaching sessions!
Whether you’re speaking to 10 people or 100, if you understand how to engage and connect with your audience, you will be well on your way to inspiring them… and motivating them to sign up for a program with you!
Here are 5 powerful public speaking tips that will help you make a powerful and positive impression on your audience
PUBLIC SPEAKING TIP #1: Make Eye Contact
In order to reach anyone, whether in a coaching session or at a public speaking event, you have to genuinely connect with them. Making eye contact says that you are fully present and will be speaking with sincerity and intention.
If you’re speaking to a very small group, try to look at each individual over the course of your speech, so that that everyone feels meaningfully engaged. If you’re a little nervous, it may be tempting to look out above people or around a room. But once you’ve made eye contact and feel people’s engagement, you’ll actually become less nervous!
If you’re speaking to a much larger group, it’s not always possible to make eye contact with everyone. But you can make eye contact with different people in different parts of the room.
Each time you look at an individual, do your best to complete an entire sentence or thought, without breaking your gaze. When you finish your sentence or thought, move on to another person from there.
When you make an effort to make eye contact with members of your audience, it’s like you’re having a real conversation with the group, which creates an exchange of energy and rapport.
PUBLIC SPEAKING TIP #2: Smile
Smiling is a universal language. A genuine smile communicates warmth and compassion and also says that you are enjoying what you’re talking about! A smile says your engagement with a group brings you joy.
When you exhibit passion for the content matter, you will transfer this energy to others. Make sure to exude warmth to as many audience members as you can at a talk or during a session, but if you’re nervous, focus on the people who are positively interacting with you already.
Connecting with people who are visibly engaged – those clearly enjoying your presentation and nodding “yes” – will elevate your confidence, help you feel more relaxed and communicate more effectively!
PUBLIC SPEAKING TIP #3: PAUSE… And Then Speak Slowly
When we get nervous, or even excited, it’s not just out heartbeats that quicken – our pace of speaking can also speed up significantly!
So believe it or not, it’s actually almost impossible to speak too slowly when speaking publicly. In fact, if your speaking seems slow in your mind, it’s probably exactly the right pace for your listeners. This is especially true when speaking at larger events.
Try including 3 to 8 second pauses at important moments in your speech, particularly right before key points or important questions. This will create a natural and captivating rhythm to your speech.
And when you give your listeners time to process what you are saying, you are more likely to connect with them in a meaningful way!
PUBLIC SPEAKING TIP #4: Interpret Your Nervousness as Excitement
Have you ever noticed that when reporters interview Olympians before and after they compete and ask, “Were you nervous?” all the athletes give the same answer…
“No, I was excited!”
Olympic competitors are taught to take the body’s signs of nervousness – clammy hands, pounding heart and tense nerves – and reinterpret them as side effects of excitement and exhilaration.
So, when you’re speaking to a group, you can pause (remember you want to do this anyway!) and take a moment to notice what you are noticing. If you notice that you feel nervous energy, you can say to yourself, “I’m not nervous, I’m excited!” and you can begin to actually convince your brain of this!
As we all know, re-patterning our mindset is one of the most powerful tools we have for accomplishing goals, and delivering a speeches or leading a coaching session is no exception.
Remember, the more excited you are about what you’re saying, the more engaging you’ll be to your listeners!
PUBLIC SPEAKING TIP #5: Thank Your Audience
Your listeners’ time, attention and energy are gifts they are giving you – and it’s important to receive gifts with gratitude!
Be sure to thoroughly and genuinely thank your audience for showing up, being present, trusting in you, and taking the time to invest in themselves.
Also be sure to express gratitude whether you are wrapping up an individual coaching session or giving a speech to a giant audience. Acknowledge that your audience members’ time and energy are precious resources, and for the time you were all together, they’ve chosen to dedicate their time and energy to you.
And of course, if an audience applauds you, thank them for this too! Gratitude is infectious and cultivates greater joy all around!
The secret to being a great public speaker is that it’s not about educating them… it’s ALL about how you make your audience FEEL
No matter how captivating your speaking is, most people will not remember everything you have said. They will, however, never forget how you made them feel.
When your energy and intention come from a place of wanting to truly help people, when it is clear that you long to serve and elevate them, they’re going to feel it!
So remember that at the end of the day, these public speaking tips are really about making people feel important – about establishing common ground, increasing positive energy, and motivating them to be their best selves. When you know this deeply as you speak to people, you are sure to succeed at reaching them!
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