How to avoid saying too much or too little, even if you’re nervous?
1. Decide ahead of time exactly what you want to say. Write it down, either in complete sentences, short phrases or key words that will jog your memory.
2. Organize your thoughts into a natural progression or particular formula that you’ve had success with in the past or you’ve learned will have the greatest effect on your listeners.
3. Memorize the key words and short phrases that most aptly describe your thoughts so you’ll say them the same way every time. You don’t have to memorize the whole talk. You just want a few signposts that will keep your organization intact so you’ll be able to say exactly what you want to say without worrying that you’ll forget something.
4. Write your key words and/or phrases on small notes that are easy to review before you speak. Carry them in your hand if you need to refer to them. 3×5 cards work very well for this purpose.
5. Rehearse! Speak into a recorder two or three times, then listen to yourself in the car, while you’re doing household chores, before you go to sleep at night. Listening to yourself helps etch into your memory the most important ideas you want to get across.
6. Take a deep breath before you start and go for it! Knowing how well you’ve prepared and that you’re sure of your key words and phrases will soothe those butterflies and neutralize the heebie-jeebies. Your confidence will soar because you’ll know, absolutely, you’re not going to say too much or too little.
You’re going to say it just right!
That was great advice! It confirmed that what I already do is what I shall continue to do. Thank you!