It’s traditional at a wedding that the men get to talk – a lot! It’s usually the groom, the best man and the Father of the bride. Being a non-traditional type of woman I had decided at my wedding that I would also make a speech.
The best man knew I would be making one but no one else did. So as the applause for my Dad died down, Jimmy stood up and introduced “The new Mrs Gluckstein”. I guess it’s one way of getting the last word! I was so nervous that I was literally trembling. It was a short speech, I can’t remember anything that I said and mostly I thanked my husband for marrying me! I got a huge, roaring cheer from my friends who were just sooo happy for me. I have a feeling if I’d gotten up and read the menu it would have had the same effect!!! I guess the guys have it tougher as a lot more is expected from them.
So if you’ve decided to be a thoroughly modern bride and make a speech at your wedding or if your partner/Dad/best friend is about to embark on the nerve racking journey of making a speech, this blog is for you.
I have known Carl Rodrigues for a number of years as a business coach. I recently attended one of his seminars and was blown away. He talked to a room packed to the rafters with entrepreneurs (not the easiest of audiences) and he had us all mesmerised. He is a captivating, humorous, interesting speaker. When I started to think about this blog I immediately thought of Carl. This is his advice on public speaking, in his own words…..
(I’ve also included some pictures of my wedding speeches because it’s just so nice to get them back out for another look!)
“When people get asked to do a speech at a wedding it can throw up challenges to be overcome – how to be authentic, articulate, confident, engaging, funny…etc – an opportunity to develop many invaluable skills…
1) Focus on your audience and the people you’re writing the speech for – the more you focus on what you’d like to give that will please them and what others will enjoy hearing, the more your inner fears and preoccupations will subside
2) On the day, keep your notes simple – have key points you want to cover, allow storytelling to be natural rather than reading script, allow it to flow
3) Start meditating and practising mindfulness – when you are focused and in the present moment you can best access inspiration, connection, creativity – the best laughs come from the unprepared synchronous happenings – meditation helps you become calm and centred, natural and authentic. Try my free mindfulness meditation
4) Use visualisations to feel the confidence of delivering the speech how you want it to go – try hypnotherapy e.g. try Anna Thompson Fearless & Powerful Public Speaking Hypnosis on iTunes to re-program your mind; create and use affirmations describing who you want to become.
5) Relax, smile, set the intention that you will enjoy yourself – look into the audience and focus on the speech being for them – give good eye contact around the room
6) Practice allowing yourself to connect to and radiate out your inner glow. Try this “go to glow” meditation
7) Practice lots – get small groups of trusted cheerleaders to listen to you – record yourself – audio or video and watch it back
8) Focus on being yourself and speak from the heart – know that people want you to do well
9) Join a Toastmasters group to practice public speaking
10) De-clutter your busy mind by journalling each morning to get inspiration and clarity of thought.”
Carl Rodrigues is a productivity coach and helps people find their mission and purpose. His course Conscious Productivity provides 10 minute videos with planning tips, visualisations, energising breathing exercises and strategies to help busy people think more clearly, get the important things done and be more relaxed and in flow.
I highly recommend Carl, he has helped me to be very focused in the way I work at Glam Hatters, but that’s a whole other blog (coming soon!). He has also helped me in my delivery of the hat making hen party workshops, I love to talk to a group of hens, no matter how many of them there are! Do take a look at his wonderful website.