Confidence is a key element in life, and it should be visible in everything that you say and do. Confidence is needed when you are at work, making friends, getting that coveted promotion, going up to the person you like or even just getting a good deal on a car. It is therefore, important, that you learn how to speak confidently to have success in your life!
The most fundamental way that you can show your confidence is through how you speak - your words as well as how you speak, and that's what's important to learn.
9 Secrets to Help You Speak More Confidently
Slow Down When Speaking
A lot of people rush into what they are going to say, especially if they are nervous or excited. This makes them appear out-of-control and insecure, not exactly the confident look we want to have. If you want to know how to speak confidently, you need to master the art of talking slowly.
Whether it is in front of a whole audience or a small group of intimate friends, you need to speak slowly with adequate pauses in between. When you speak slowly in a relaxed manner, it is going to tell other people that you have absolute control of yourself and that you are confident.
Practice Looking in the Eye
When you are talking to someone, try to talk by looking them in the eye rather than fidgeting and looking at your shoes. A person who doesn't hesitate looking at someone right into the eyes when talking comes out as someone who is honest as well as confident.
When trying to learn how to speak confidently, you need to learn to be able to look at your listeners directly. Nothing spells out confident more than being able to create a connection with your listeners.
Learn to Start at the Right Time
Knowing when to start is also very important in speaking confidently. In this case also, speaking too soon - jumping with words immediately after being asked a question - is a sign of nervousness and lacking control over oneself. What you need to learn, if you want to know how to speak confidently, is when to start talking. The little pauses at the proper times are important. When being introduced in a public speech, take a few seconds to start talking. This will give you time to think about what you are going to say and to build suspense among your audience.
You Don't Have to Be Loud
Speaking confidently has nothing to do with being loud with your words. Unless you are speaking to a large audience without a microphone, you shouldn't be loud. Speak slowly and in a normal tone just enough for other people to hear you; speaking loudly will not ensure that your words are significant and important. Rather, a steady tone that is just right will project your confidence level to your audience.
Breathe When Needed
Breathing is important, not only for living, but in your conversation too. Breathe when you need to, because that will help you keep your words in check, and stop you from speaking too quickly. Besides, taking a deep breath in the middle of a speech will help you relax if you are struggling with oxygen deprivation. It will also give you a few seconds to think of what you are going to say next especially in situations where you are momentarily out of words.
Eradicate Fillers from Your Words
We all use the occasional "hmm" and "ah" when we are speaking, and they are a big no-no if you want to learn how to speak confidently. If you find yourself out of words momentarily, instead of using filler words, take a pause. A pause would help you relax and search for appropriate words rather than just filler words which would only show your audience that you are nervous.
Perfect Your Posture
Your posture is actually a very important part of your confidence. If you have a habit of slouching then your words, no matter how strong and powerful they are, would not have the desired effect on your audience. You need to improve your posture - stand up tall, as stretched as you can, and keep your backbone straight when talking to someone. Your body language needs to be as powerful as the verbal language in order for you to project confidence.
Be Mindful of Your Audience
When you are speaking to someone, be mindful of their reactions as well as your own words. Being a confident speaker is not about just saying what you have on your mind, but at the same time, knowing what your audience thinks of your words. Look at who you are talking to; if your target audience seems to enjoy what you are saying, it will give you even more confidence.
Know Your Own Voice
It is important that you know how you sound; so, try and practice speaking on your own, especially if you have a public speech coming up. Practicing on your own will not only let you know how your voice sounds, but also whether you have any weaknesses, how long you can talk, and whether there are any words you don’t know how to pronounce properly. Whether you are about to speak in front of a large audience or a small group of people, practice beforehand so that you have a good idea about how you sound like.