Effective public speakers know the power of physical touch, says a leading expert in how to improve communication with others, public speaking and performance.
“In my humble view, there is never enough attention given to the formidable power of tactile connection,” asserts Eric Stone.
Mr. Stone is a former New York City stage and television actor, operates Speakers and Artists International, Inc. (www.publicspeakingconnection.com) in Beverly Hills, Calif.
That’s right. He suggests speakers learn the art of physical touch in a professional way.
“It assuredly dates back to our tribal heritage where constant contact was the only way to trust and thrive,” he explains.
“We trust what we can see and touch before anything else,” adds Mr. Stone.
“Politicians understand this so well and so should anyone interested in better communication and public speaking,” he points out.
He says “the act of touching solidifies your game.”
The speaking expert provides examples:
— Shake hands with someone before you go on stage or before you begin your speech.
— Mingle by touching.
— Do the same at meetings. Make a point of holding your gaze as you touch someone’s arm or elbow and make eye contact.
— Touch objects such as furniture, a glass of water, the podium, etc., anything that belongs to the physical world.
“Spot objects in the room. See them physically not just as the mental awareness that they are there,” he explains. “It establishes your presence and grounds you.”
Mr. Stone says “it brings us back to natural living and anchors our performances and communication.”
He says touching helps you bond with your audience.
“Gravity, balance, breathing and tactile relatedness are your best allies when things signal that something could go wrong,” he adds.
“Feel the weight of your body, breathe deeply several times consciously and get on a mission to touch and hold,” he advises. “Remember: the mind can only project mental pictures and it should only operate in the background at the service of your physical self.”
From the Coach’s Corner, here are more public speaking tips:
Success in Public Speaking Stems from Being Natural…Here’s How — Ever notice how some public speakers perform flawlessly? How they seem to be authentic, natural speakers? Our thought processes prevent us from becoming natural speakers, says Eric Stone, a leading expert in how to improve communication with others, public speaking and performance.
Maximize Your Speaking with the Power of Pauses — Have you ever noticed why some people succeed as powerful public speakers? One salient reason is they know how to use the power of pauses. “Along with rooted passion and deliberate enthusiasm, pauses are the true launching pads of any great verbal impact,” says Eric Stone, a leading expert in communication with others.
Communication – You Can Train Yourself to Stop Stressing — It’s OK to be nervous before giving a speech or when you’re entering an important round of negotiations. Feeling pressure is one thing but allowing it to morph into stress and tension is another. When you allow this to happen, in a sense, you’re giving away your personal power, which inhibits your performance.
Public Speaking Tips – for Speeches in Accepting Awards, Honors — So you’re about to be honored for your pro bono work, volunteerism, or for creating a foundation to fund scholarships for education. But you get stage fright or don’t know how to most-effectively frame your acceptance speech? Join the crowd. A lot of people have difficulty in public speaking.
How to Get More Opportunities as a Guest Speaker — If you’re successful in generating speaking opportunities, you’ll create opportunities for your career. At the least, you’ll be in a position to raise your business profile. Ideally, prospective clients or customers will be in the audience. Count on opportunities to develop centers of influence — people who can refer business to you.
9 Tips to Connect with People after You Make Your Speech — Typically, in making a speech at a public forum, businesspeople hope to get a return on their investment. After all, giving a great speech or serving on a panel before a targeted audience necessitates your valuable time and effort in preparation.
“A good speech should be like a woman’s skirt; long enough to cover the subject and short enough to create interest.”
-Winston S. Churchill