Be You when You’re Speaking

Speaker Man


When I started speaking, my wife and daughter said, “What are you doing? You sound so fake! Just be yourself.” But I thought I had to be an orator; large than life and dramatic. In short, Mr. Speaker Man! And just like me, when I started out, so many newbie speakers speak like circus ringmasters. I understand why though, because they’re trying to make an impact.


Female SingerBe You

The above reminds me of a particular night at singing classes, when one of the female singing students said, “I wish I could sing like Samantha, she has such a great voice.” It turns out she told Samantha this and found out that Samantha felt the same way about her. What a revelation. That is, we are all unique, and this is a gift. Singing teachers are always saying, “Don’t copy, make the song yours and own it.” It reminds me of the adage, “Be yourself, everyone else is already taken.”


Why Be You

Red Question MarkBeing you, gives you likability, authenticity and credibility. I know, it also means being vulnerable. But with practice, you’ll find the confidence to become comfortable being you. You need to believe that you are interesting, just the way you are. Why? Because you are!


Larger Than…Asian Dancer with Face Make Up

I will say this though, when you are speaking to an audience of two hundred plus, you do need to be somewhat larger. That is, you need to crank up your body language and I also recommend you use a mic. Actors crank up their stage makeup and costume dynamics for the same reason, and that’s for the benefit of the audience members way down the back. But the audience members will still want the unique, authentic and wonderful you.


In a Nutshell

WallnutSo whether you are a speaker, a singer or even a comedian, find your voice, be original and don’t imitate. Be your own, unique, authentic, powerful, interesting self. In a nutshell, just be you!

Speak to Connect, to make that Difference.

Author: Henk van den Bergen

I have been speaking on Champagne for 20 years and decided to improve my speaking skills by joining Toastmasters International 13 year ago. I'm still a member today and I'm passionate about sharing what I’ve learned. I’m also proud to be the 1998 “Vin de Champagne Award” winner and being a three time Australian finalist in the International Speech contest.

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