First, create a story or association with their name – what’s something about them that’s memorable? What’s a feature that you can remember about them, and connect with them about? This could be the way they wear their hair, or the way they walk, or even their eyes.
Then, think of an action that you can associate with them. What do they do that reminds you of something? Their hobbies, their career, their passions? Think of that as the action that you’ll remember when you see them, or hear their name.
Lastly, think of an object that you can associate with them that has to do with something about them. For example, you might picture them holding a mic if they’re a singer, or a paintbrush if they’re an artist. This object will remind you of their name once you hear it. You can picture it in your mind, and when you hear their name again, you’ll remember what that object was, and then remember their name.
With these three factors in mind, create a story using those connections that you’ve developed with them. And remember, these are all internal – don’t let the person know that you’re thinking of these things while you’re speaking to them and introducing themselves. Keep it in your mind.
So, what would you do if you meet someone from a different culture, who speaks a different language? How would you remember their name? It can be embarrassing and frustrating to meet someone with a difficult name to pronounce and then forget it, making them have to tell you and sound it out all over again. Avoid that embarrassment by just calmly working through the steps we’ve outlined above.
Here’s an example of someone who’s name I’ve made up, but isn’t too familiar sounding to me: Shonda Curl. The first thing I’d do is take it one word at a time – first name, then last name. Shonda reminds me of Honda, the car company. Curl reminds me of girl. So, I’ll remember her name by going through my steps, feature, action and object, and then remember her full name – Shonda Curl. The next time I see her, I’ll remember her name by remembering those things I’ve associated with her in order to help me remember.
It seems silly and time consuming, but you can do these things in a split second. Within a minute of meeting someone, you can have this entire story built out in your mind to remember their name. It won’t take you nearly as long as it took you to read this article – it can happen in a split second, if you just remember to take these steps when you’re introducing yourself to someone new.
In case you missed the last blog about How to Memorise Your Speech in 5 Minutes. Check it out & make sure to comment below if you liked this blog.
Start with imagining your front door. If you can differentiate your front door in your memories to all of the other doors around it, that’s the only differentiation you need. No matter where you are, you know your home – it’s your home base. You know it inside out.
How does that relate to giving a speech? We’re going to bookmark five places in the house – for example, your front door, a mirror, a doorway to the living room, a TV, or a picture frame. These five things are the first, most memorable things you see when you walk into your home, and they should become your most memorable sections of your speech as well.
Once you’ve summarized your speech, pick out five spots in the speech to bookmark. I’ve chosen five parts in my speech to associate with those five bookmarks in my home that I know very well, which I see in order as I move throughout my house. I know the order they come in, because I know which order I see them as I enter my home.
So, first, I’ll start with the opener of my speech, which is a joke about drinking beer. The first thing I see when I walk up to my house is the front door – so, the first thing I remember? My opener about beer.
Then so on, and so on – I remember my second point of my speech is related to milk. The second thing I see when I walk into my home is a big, full-body mirror. I remember that segment about milk in my speech is the second part of my speech, associated with the second thing I see when I walk into my home.
Easy enough, right?
Then keep going through the third, fourth and fifth parts of your speech. Remember, they’re associated with those other parts of your home that you see once you walk in. Using this method, you can quickly identify five memorable parts of your home, then populate those areas with objects from your speech to make it memorable.
What if you have a small list? Maybe just pick five spots in one room instead of a house. Pick out the fridge, the counter, the table, the microwave – choose just small things in one room that you remember the order of distinctly, and which you can associate to the different segments of your speech.
What if you have a longer speech? Open up your entire house in your memory and associate tons of spots in your home with the important spots in your speech. You know where things area as you walk through your home – so, walk through your speech the same way.
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3 Ways to Believe In Your Message
1. Focus on impact
Is your audience better off after having been served by you? Or worse off? If they are better off then you have a solution which is impacting their life. Regardless of how small or big the impact, at least you’re making an impact and unless you got your word out there, nobody would know that you or your service exists.
If you serve just one person or a thousand, those people have already bought into your vision and only you can impact them in the way that you do. Instead of focusing on the technical aspect of your work, focus on the impact that you’re having as a result of you sharing your work.
Your solution can serve as many people as you’d like it to, but unless you believe in it, you’ll be too hesitant to share it with others and if I don’t know what you do, how could I use your service?
2. Test Your Assumptions
Are you holding onto stories that no longer serve you? Things that happened in the past but no longer serve your needs?
Might be time to test your assumptions to see if they still have any legs. When the topic of memory comes up the first thing I hear is ‘I have a crap memory’ or ‘a rubbish memory’ but within the next 5 minutes when asked about their hobby can recite their favourite footballers annual salary and shoe size proving that their memory is just fine.
Test your assumptions now to see if you’re carrying some of the old baggage that you can choose to let go now.
3. Slice & Dice Your Goals
Having the big picture about where you want to be in 10 years is phenomenal, but does it empower your actions today or holds you back?
To exhibit I have Sam and Joe here:
Sam knows exactly what he wants in 10 years but the goal is so big that he’s been thinking about it for the last 3 years without taking any action, it is too overwhelming and the project just too big for him to do anything about it.
Joe on the other hand has a similar idea about where he wants to be in 10 years but quickly traced it all the way to this moment and divided the big goal into small measurable tasks, so instead of focusing on the 100 podcast episodes he needs to record he focuses on just recording number 1 this week.
Where Sams ideas immobilise any action, Joe’s ideas are built on small steps which he can act on right now. This not only gives him more control over his future, it allows him to measure small steps, make course corrections and test his assumptions along the way.
Each small win then feeds into his overall goal, his confidence and helps him gain momentum.
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If you enjoyed this video, check out 15 Ways to Build Instant Confidence
1. Memorise the Outline
Writing things down helps us commit words onto page and helps us move our thoughts into visual concepts. However, it is more than likely that your speech is not going to be televised to the rest of the world and will not be used to end World War (dramatic I know), therefore you can be forgiven for being conversational in your approach and in doing so come across as present and fresh. Let's take a look at how to do just that.
If you’re talking for under 20 minutes you can get away with summarizing your speech on a card using just 5 phrases: Open, Body point 1, Body Point 2, Body Point 3 and Conclusion. If you don’t trust your memory at all, you may choose to add 3 more phrases to each point above so you have 15 phrases (5x3) in total to help you trigger the content in the right sequence. Nobody knows the details either so if you juggle up the order, it’s your show, pick up another phrase and continue on with it. That’s the beauty of outline. Our brain is very good at filling in the details so by leaving out filler words and non-important details you’re asking your audience to participate and use their own imagination, much like we do when we’re told an exotic story by our friends.
One of the common excuse I hear is that ‘I’m bad with memory’. Sure! Then why try to memorise 500+ words/ phrases when you can boil it down to 15 phrases. Go easy on yourself.
2. Gather Intel (2 minutes or less)
This doesn’t need to be CIA style detailed report, no! just the basic things that you notice about the environment you’re in. Level of expertise in the room, the weather outside, any big events that happened just before you started talking, the distance between the first person in the row and the last person.
As you begin to deliver your speech, you now have reference points all gathered from present moment that you can bounce back to your audience. This keeps your audience alert as they know you’re paying attention and in turn this makes them pay attention to what it is you’re saying. You could say things like:
Pick one or two and pepper your speech at any point to help break the ice, bring everyone to the present moment and keep them engaged.
3. Gauge Interaction
As you deliver your speech pay attention to how well the information is received on the other end? Does your audience look engaged to you? Their eyes wide open and jaws to the floor or are they playing with their stationary and not really focused on what is being said. There body is your WiFi signal for success/ failure. Although it is not always possible to get everyone in the room to listen it is a good indicator of how well the information is received.
You may have heard/ seen these being used in seminars before, mainly because seminars tend to be long (upto 9 hours of listening to the same speaker on the same topic).
If you find your audience is disengaged, use one of the following methods to get them back into your narrative:
All these devices are used to break down the information and let the audience interact back with you making them more receptive of the information you have to deliver. It gives them a chance to soak in the information and break down the monotony and stream of information thrown at them over time.
To summarise Scripted speeches are usually the kind of speeches that appear over-rehearsed, robotic and monotonous. By memorising the outline, gathering intel and gauging interaction you can break down the stream of information at regular intervals and help connect your audience to your message.
Which one have you used already? Would you dare combining all of them in your next speech?
Comment below to let me know.
It's that little nudge sometimes that can get us to follow through on what we're supposed to be doing. Let these quotes from successful entrepreneurs give you the motivation you need next time you're putting together a speech, a meeting or a workshop. Let me know your favourite one by commenting below?
Finding a niche, finding your voice, delivering value and getting paid becomes top priority for any speaker getting started as a professional speaker. Today I'm talking to award winning professional speaker David Hyner. As a BBC Host, an author, entrepreneur, trainer and professional speaker David has walked the walk and worked his way through various rungs to become one of only six speakers in the world to win the ACE hall of fame award.
1. Fear Alarm
Not one we often think about but can have a drastic impact on our health. Overcoming fear is difficult when we customise our own device to make us jump first thing in the morning. Research here shows traditional alarm noises are not good for us. Who wants more fear in their life anyway? Want suggestions:
2. Turn Off Notifications
Buzzing apps distract our focus and momentum. A way around this would be to turn off all the notifications. If you want you can keep your messaging app enabled and the rest turned off. This way you're in charge of allowing your phone to bother you but only when you want to.
Settings> Notifications> Click on each app and then use the slider to turn it off
Settings> Sound and notification> App notification > 'Block' the apps you don't need.
For android users there is more information on this site.
3. Email and social block
This research shows that we use our phones for over five hours a day, checking and refreshing it again and again. That habit eats into our time throughout the day. Scheduling an hour in the day will help us batch the email sends and social browsing. Hour might seem long at first but it's better than spending five. Although you may choose any time you want, a tip would be to set a time after you've done the most critical task in the day.
4. Idea Homescreen
If you're someone who gets distracted by their phone, then this one is for you. Move non-urgent apps to the second screen and prevent icons from distracting you.
Yes! It is possible for an icon to seduce you to open it. That's their job. Your screen could look something like this:
Essential apps (Mail, Maps, Messages, WhatsApp etc)
2nd Screen: Non-essential apps (Games, Dating, Social, etc)
Doing this allows you to take the seducing/ marketing power away from your phone and back in your control. Or, you could group them together in a folder.
5. Prime Spot
Getting rid of social media from our life is never the aim. Being in control of what makes us happy is. Based on algorithms Facebook decides what to display every time you run it. Bypass the algorithms and tell Facebook exactly what type of content you prefer. From within your favourite groups tap the 'Following' and choose 'See first'. Make your social treat more rewarding by customising your feeds. Change it as your interest changes.
6. Cloud Purge
If you have unused apps that you haven't used for a few weeks, it may be a good idea to delete them. There is no need to hold onto an app when we don't use it. Download it onto your phone in minutes when you need them again. Restore battery health, speed up your phone and get to apps you want.
7. Do Not Disturb Zone
There are going to be times when you want to turn off the phone and get on with some work. Placing your phone on a pillow can help you tracks calls and messages. With many things demanding our attention, the real struggle is to focus on a few things that matter. Taking back control and attention can help you be more productive in short amount of time.
For those moments when we just miss the mark by an inch, when things just don't add up and there isn't enough time in day. This list is a reference for that moment. 15 things you can do to instantly get some oxygen pumping through your brain, there is a printable at the end of the blog which you can download/ print/ fill and then snap on your phone. Top 5 are part of the video.
With her trending YouTube video reaching just over 6 million views in less than 2 days, Oprah has caused a bit of a storm over social media. Lets take a look closer look at her 5 Steps To Leadership.
Les Brown shared this quote in one of his video which I think is absolutely relevant to the first Smart Public Speaker podcast:
“The graveyard is the richest place on earth, because it is here that you will find all the hopes and dreams that were never fulfilled, the books that were never written, the songs that were never sung, the inventions that were never shared, the cures that were never discovered, all because someone was too afraid to take that first step, keep with the problem, or determined to carry our their dream.” - Les Brown
Something however we take the plunge, go for it and fail face first.
In this episode we talk about a very famous technique used in Toastmasters and outside to help create content and overcome the fear of tackling big challenges.
We get to hear from a fellow subscriber of 4-bullet Thursday newsletter and answer his burning question on this podcast episode.
Thanks for listening!
App mentioned in the podcast My W Days can be found on the resource page.
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