I’m a talker.
I always have been.
But today, I’m sick of the sound of my own voice.
You see, I’m planning a new course, and for me, the best way to do this is talking aloud. Talking through what I’m going to say. Again. And again. And again.
Lots of different times. In lots of different ways.
But many people I work with seem to miss this vital step when planning a talk, workshop, or presentation.
Well, I think it’s because of two reasons:
- Talking to yourself can make you feel stupid.
- Thinking about the event can make you feel nervous.
(Feelings most of us are keen to avoid).
So, many people just miss my ‘talk it out’ step completely.
Or they do this instead:
“Right, this is what I am going to say. On this slide I’m going to talk about the issues with the project. Then on this slide, I’m going to talk briefly about the background and then I’m just going to cover off.”
You get the point. And I do not recommend this approach.
Because talking about your presentation is not the same as talking through your presentation.
It’s like when I talk about the exercise I’m going to do (which is often), as opposed to doing the exercise (which is rare). The two approaches have very different effects.
With planning and practising a talk, it is the same. You need to get a bit sweaty!
This will help you in three ways:
Once you start talking, you will make changes. Lots of them. Talking aloud helps clarify your message.
The more you talk through your words, the less of them you will need to use.
Feeling familiar with your content makes you feel more confident. (The exact feeling we do want – and one that makes any feelings of discomfort in talking aloud to yourself well worth it).
(An important note – your goal should be familiarisation – your aim is not to memorise a script word for word. For more about scripts you can read this past blog post here)!
Stop presenting. Start talking.