Public Speaking Tutor and former Stand-Up Comedian
Scroll down for FREE public speaking advice.
"The worst advice I was ever given about public speaking was to 'picture the audience naked'.
If you're speaking at work it's a HR nightmare and at your wedding, well, it's too early to look at your new mother-in-law like that. I have better advice from years of being on stage."
FREE Public Speaking Advice
the big day
Prepare, prepare, prepare
There will be a lot going on in the few days before and on the day of the wedding. You don't want to be thinking about your speech. Preparation will give you confidence on the day.
Read the Speech Out Loud
When going through your speech read it out loud as much as you can, how you speak and how you read are different. You need to hear and feel how it sounds.
Know the space
It will help you to be able to picture the space that you will be talking in, if you don't have access most wedding venues will have photos online. It will help if you can picture the space when you are practising your speech.
Know how you are going to be heard
There is a big difference between using a microphone and just speaking. It will affect how you perform your speech, knowing will help how you practice.
"Whether you think you can, or you think you can't, you are right." - Henry Ford
It is really important to keep your head up and think about it going well.
Advice for On the Big Day
On The Day
Tempting as it might be it will not help, you will have plenty of time after the speech.
Know the room
Now you can see the space, take a moment to visualise yourself speaking there. If you can stand where you are going to stand and know where people that you are going to mention in your speech are sitting.
Stand your ground
Don't fidget, plant your feet and stand up straight. Your confidence breeds confidence. If your notes are on paper, try and rest them on the table. All your preparation has got you ready for this moment.
If you look at your shoes while you speak, by the end it will only be your shoes listening. Making eye contact around the room is really important to a successful speech.
You are in control
The most important thing to remember is that you are in control, they are sitting waiting for you to speak, if you stop they will wait. This is a wedding everyone wants it to be a success.
Pauses are Power
Know your speech well enough to know when to pause. Let the audience laugh and react, give them space and yourself space to breath. When we get nervous we speed up, if you feel that happening take a pause.
After the speech
Relax, enjoy the wedding, and let people praise you for what a great job you did.
If you feel you missed something or messed part of the speech up, forget it, it has gone.