How we sound can sometimes get in the way of being heard. Many people can feel and act less confident when communicating in particular contexts. Other people may actually feel confident but their speech doesn’t reflect that confidence. Do you find yourself in one of these situations?
- Feeling shy when talking in a group
- Finding it difficult to leave a short, clear phone message
- Being taken less seriously for sounding too feminine, too quiet, too young, or too casual
- Feeling nervous at an interview
- Lacking confidence when interacting with your professional superiors
- Lacking confidence or being unmemorable when making a first impression
Voice and communication training can be a useful tool to help you gain confidence in professional and social situations, and even gain respect if you feel that you are mistreated or wrongly perceived for how you sound. This can be done by combining a variety of techniques that help you adjust to particular situations while still reflecting your own individuality. I use audio/video recordings to help make you aware of your speaking habits, and help you to begin modifying your speech so that your message becomes more important to your listener.
Some women and gay men face discrimination because of the way they talk. If that's you, do you feel that your speaking habits affect your personal safety and/or livelihood?
Using fewer words makes a speaker sound more direct and assertive. Consider how many words you use to make your point.
Try to speak more slowly and loudly to help you command the attention of your listener for longer.
Do you feel that your physical size affects how people view you and hear you? A person who is shorter, who has smaller vocal folds, or who has a smaller head or neck is more likely to have a higher and younger sounding voice.