The words you say as well as your body language in public speaking are both influential in the message you convey and the success achieved.
When we have the opportunity to speak in public, we will (hopefully) take the time to create a speech with carefully chosen words.
Each of the words we use will be there to help us convey the core message of our speech to those listening, ensuring we make the most of our powerful public speaking opportunity.
In addition to the words we select for our speech, there is another message that we are conveying to our listeners.
Our body language in public speaking is a second message that's being sent with the movements we make with our hands, how we stand, the gestures of our faces, where we look, etc.
If our body language looks protective, unfriendly or closed off, then that's the message the audience will receive from us.
Should our body language be communicating a message that is conflicting or even the opposite to the words being spoken, this incongruity will be picked up by everyone listening to the speech.
They will then subconsciously start to ignore the message and any opportunity to help or influence them will be lost.
When you have body language that is congruent with your spoken words it will communicate to your audience that you are confident, in control and knowledgeable on the subject you are speaking on.
This will make the audience want to hear your speech and pay ever close attention.
The 5 areas of body language to be aware of when speaking in public are:
How you are standing and if you look confident
Move with purpose rather than pacing up and down
Speak loud enough for everyone to hear you, even at the back. Use
vocal variety to add emphasis to your words
Make natural, open gestures
- Eye Contact
Look at everyone attending, making slow, purposeful glances
With your body language sending out the same message as your words, you will have more impact on all those attending as they stay interested and engaged in your speech.
About the Author
Andy O'Sullivan is an international bestselling author of 5 books on public speaking, pitching and presenting. Andy is a speaker and educator on the subject of how to survive and thrive in the business world with effective public speaking, pitching and presentation skills.
To lose your public speaking fears and discover time-tested tips to your presentation success, simply book your free session with Andy HERE