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How to improve Your Speaking Voice?

How to improve Your Speaking Voice?

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Published by Gary Wohlman
See www.mypresentationdoctor.com for more info, insights and inspiration
See www.mypresentationdoctor.com for more info, insights and inspiration

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Categories:Types, Speeches
Published by: Gary Wohlman on Jul 20, 2012
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial

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07/26/2013

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How to Improve your Speaking Voice?
The following transcript is from an actual session I led with a client who is beginning to makeaudio recordings of his presentations to make available to his students. He wanted to learn tips,tools and techniques to improve the quality and effectiveness of his live and recorded voice.Gary Wohlman = GW Participant = PP:
In today‟s session, I want to focus
on improving my speaking voice
 –
 
both when I‟m making
recordings for my students as well as in person. What can I do?GW: Okay, to get started, in the physical space that your voice is projecting into right now to recordthis session, envision yourself speaking to live people, rather than just focusing on speaking intothe metal. because you are alive and they are listening, but you never see them. And they never see you. So, you are making contact without the visual element. When you are speaking into therecorder without people being able to read your gestures and physical expression,
it‟s
even moreimportant to make a strong and resonant connection with your body and your messaging as
though your audience were right in front of you…
 For example, one time I was working with a man name Bob Rathbun. He was a newscommentator for sports, and this was on the east coast of the United States. Then he received apromotion and moved with his wife to the mid-west of the United States. He got a job on TV doingpresenting. Now people saw him. Before he made his big move to become one of the mostsuccessful and celebrated sportscasters and live TV commentators of all time, I showed himways he could speak with greater effectiveness on the radio with his voice without anybodyseeing him. He actually started doing some really interesting things to enhance his vocaleffectiveness with his body.Without being prompted by me,
he naturally put his fingers of one hand together into afocused pose like a tripod, and in that focus, his energy was so much more connected.
Hisspeaking voice sounded so much more powerful as a result of the way he put his body inparticular postures and stances that allowed him, like a radio antenna, to pick up differentfrequencies and to communicate in such a way that he revealed a depth of resonance in hisresidence, in the landscape of his body. And that happened as a result of tiny shifts in his finger and hands and posture. It only took moments for him to speak with greater command andconnection.P: Ok, so he shifted his posture and then he spoke better.GW: Because his posture was focused. So,
there‟s a lot of ways of working with your voice.
 P: When I want to
do a recording voice, I want to…
 
I am sure you‟ve heard Anthony Robbins speak
 in the audios. Then other people are speaking
and they read of the script. I‟m guessing AnthonyRobbins speak while he‟s walking, or doing body
gestures, while the other people just readwithout expressing themselves.GW: Yes, l
et‟s see what‟s natural for you
, because you may find a combination within a natural abilityto take a stance to move through space, to hold particular postures. With the speaking voice
people don‟t necessarily see, but maybe you are standing on one foot and that gives a feeling of „I‟m alive, I‟m
on
the edge‟. Or perhaps
, you are sitting down and you are more relaxed. Or perhaps you are walking around.
It‟s up to you to find
a
way that‟s
most dynamic. You might
 
realise that the speaking voice is a function of your posture, your movement patterns and your intention. Now le
t‟s go through the challenges
you experience in relationship to your speakingvoice.P: I have been working on my voice it the past week
. I‟ve been reading up on the posture. So, neck,
the back of the neck long, and the front
short. I‟ve noticed
my vocal cords a lot more. Breathingthrough my
stomach, chest out. It‟s like what we did last time in our session. And when I sp
eak,the vibration. . . I can feel my chest
and jaw vibrate when I speak. And I‟ve no
ticed my voice is alittle bit more raspier now.GW: And how would you communicate differently if you could because obviously you are not that
happy with that. That‟s not satisfying to you. That‟s not satisfactory to you. What would be?
 P: In terms of my voice?GW: Yes.P: I want it to be powerful, direct, and strong. When you watch TV and you hear voiceover guysadvertising a film or a show, and they get this deep raspy voice that really connects with people?
it‟s that kind of connection that I want.
So that people be listening to me, if you know what I mean.GW: Who reminds you of that?P: Those voiceover guys on TV.GW:
It‟s a deep voice.
Deep and resonant i
n the sense of authority, there‟s a slowness, a cadence
between syllables, a slow deep authority that communicates through a rhythmic slow pattern thatmoves people to recognize that
„This is an authority speaking. I want this product. I t
rust this
voice.‟
 P: Yes. Exactly. I want to have video sales letters. I want to be doing that. I want that voice to beauthoritative just like those voices of people I always hear. And I love them. It just grabs you.What I want is exactly what you said: slow words, that certain rhythm, that cadence
 –
all that.GW:
Ok, so let‟s practice. Let‟s practice with something.
 P: Ok. Can I read something?GW: Yes. What would you like to read?P:
 Anything. Have you got anything for me to read? Because I‟ll be reading mostly the video sales
letter.GW:
Here‟s
my new brochure.P: Ok. (reads)
 About Doctor Gary Wohl
man. I‟m a communi
cation skills coach. I specialise inhelping people express their 
ideas and opinions effectively.‟
 GW: Ok. Already,
I have some comments. What do you suppose I‟m going to say?
 P:
I‟m reading.
 GW: Exactly. You need to read if you are reading as though you are not reading. Act as though you
aren‟t acting. Perform as though you aren‟t performing. So it feels like, it sounds like, it looks like
 
 
(if I am seeing you) that you are integrous with your messaging, and resident in your residence
with your messaging. You‟re
envisioning and picturing everything you are saying as you aresaying it. If you can put your attention at the base of your spine, directing your attention to thatplace in you getting the message first, picture what you are saying.To master this art of speaking in your natural voice that is commanding and compelling all atonce, practice just a few words or sentences at a time. And picture one phrase at a time, feel it,see it, imagine it as though you were seeing what you are saying happen before you go on toyour next statement. In other words, allow yourself to be a little bit more
self-reflective
when youare speaking, not just producing words for you to download to people. Now, I want to feel those
words as though I can picture it, because you are saying it as though it‟s
happening in themoment. Ready? Do it that way.I: Ok. (reads)
“I‟m a communi
cation skills coach. I specialise in helping people express their ideasand opinions effectively.
 GW: Just notice how, in taking little pauses after each of those phrases, the
re‟s room for me to be inthat image with you. I can‟t be in the image with
you without you also seeing it and visualising it
first. And when you do, then I‟m brought into the sound bite of that scenario, and I am there withyou. It‟s much more engaging. So, more pauses. Picture that as though you are
in that momentitself. I almost thought it was me talking, when you were just reading the words I wrote about
being a “communications skills coach,” yet
it was you You got it? Keep going.I:
With an excellent understanding of the personal and professional developing industry, I havedeveloped a revolutionary technique, which helps people find their true voice.
 GW:
Now, I think you are on the right track with getting the words out in a way that‟s strong, direct andpowerful. I‟m going to make a recommendation starting today that you shift your three key words
to something slig
htly different. Because I‟m having the same experience as you are speaking
right now. What am I going to tell you?I: The words in the way
it‟s written and
being strong in the way of being authoritative
doesn‟t suit
the context?GW: Something like that. You are sensitive, so you know what I am about to say. What I am about tosay is look at these three key words you have been holding as your essential qualities: Powerful,direct and strong. They are all strong, alpha male, macho, fiery, powerful, assertive words. Withthose words alone,
there‟s no room in there for gentleness in your authority. There‟s no room for 
tenderness, humanity, your caring, your deep caring. You do care deeply. When I hear youspeaking with forcefulness, it feels too loud, and pushes me away. To reach me effectively, Irequire a lot more vocal variation and sensitivity in the voice production of sound.So that I can get strength with sensitivity, I get directness with dulcet tones; I get power withpoignant poises. I am playing
with the letters, so you can remember that, and I‟m saying this to
you so you can present more of your presentation in a way that is a combination of the assertive
and receptive elements that are necessary. Otherwise, it‟s all fire, it‟s all male, it‟s all
 
push, it‟s alldirect, it‟s all strong, and it leaves me cold. It‟s just loud like these announcers. I take exception to
those announcers because I prefer to have a combination of authority with confiding gentle,sometimes even whispering tones that suggest
the real secret to this is,
as though you arespeaking with
and confiding in a dear friend. And that‟s strong!
 
When I just said “the real secret tothis is,”
I wa
sn‟t shouting, I was whispering and speaking with tenderness, gentleness and ease.
  Allowing more of your whole humanity to come through, and I will want to listen more to your message,
and I‟ll remember your message. If it‟s all loud, it‟s like a hundred train cars coming
barreling down the tracks, leaving me with an empty feeling -- and
there‟s no space for me to see

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