Updated: Sep 10, 2020
Written by: Natasha Bazilevych, Executive Contributor
Executive Contributors at Brainz Magazine are handpicked and invited to contribute because of their knowledge and valuable insight within their area of expertise.
Have you ever had a moment when you were giving a speech or presentation and forgot what you wanted to say? How did you get out of that situation? Would you like to have a strategy to help you always remember your speech perfectly well?
I was in this situation a few years ago when I was giving a speech at my Toastmasters club. In the middle of my delivery, I suddenly realized I couldn’t remember what’s next. At first, my brain froze in panic. Then it started searching for ideas. Meanwhile, my face was keeping a neutral expression. I tried not to let anybody know I was feverishly searching for ways out of an awkward situation.
Do you think I was able to fool the audience? I doubt it. Of course, I kept on talking, jumped to the next point, and eventually got back on track. And maybe some people didn’t even notice. But, in any case, the effect and the power of the speech was lost.
How can we prevent such failures from happening? I’ve got a few tips for you.
Remember the Big Idea of your speech. May it be your lighthouse, the beacon of light in the dark storm. Even if you get nervous, forget the words, knowing the main idea, the key message of your speech will help you get back on track.
Write and remember the outline perfectly well. Allow it to be your map, your navigation system. Keep it in mind by all means. Make sure not to have too many points in your plan. Use odd numbers as they’re easier to remember. Our brain focuses better on lists of 3, 5, or 7.
Memorize the opening and the closing. First of all, remember your opening. Carve it into your brain. The first few seconds or even minutes are usually the most nerve-wracking. If you know your opening sentences perfectly well, it’ll gain you confidence and help you get into a speech flow. And don’t forget to prepare and memorize your ending. Otherwise, you’ll start rambling, talk too much and kill the power of your message.
Learn the transition phrases and sentences. If you’d like to remember the whole speech word by word (which is not always necessary), transition sentences will be your torches in this tunnel. You’ll most likely have several sub-points supporting your main idea. Memorize the phrases that connect these different small ideas within the speech. It’ll often be the first sentence of each paragraph.
Rehearse the speech minimum three times. How often in your life have you heard phrases like “practice makes perfect”, “repetition is the mother of skill”? It’s because they’re true! And no matter how sick and tired you are of hearing them, make sure to apply these truths in public speaking. Rehearse your speech. Repeat it several times just to yourself. Then, ask your friends to listen to you. Finally, shoot a video of yourself giving the speech and then watch it for analysis.
These are my five practical tips for you. Would you like to dive deeper into public speaking? We’ve just reopened enrollment to our 8-week advanced program Speak With Power.
You’ll learn how to:
Overcome nervousness and build confidence
Write clear and concise messages
Use storytelling and humor in speeches
Speak with persuasion and win debates
Convince your customers with ease
Deliver speeches with power
Join today because the doors will close in a couple of days!
Natasha Bazilevych, Executive Contributor Brainz Magazine
Natasha Bazilevych is an international speaker and business trainer. She teaches business owners, top manager and entrepreneurs to give powerful presentations and reach audacious goals. Natasha has been teaching business skills for 13 years, has two bachelor degrees and an MBA. Her signature program “Speak With Power” is a unique experience after which each participant knows how to overcome fear, craft powerful messages and deliver them with confidence.