Wednesday, 2 December 2015


Importance Of Body Language

Many people who give speeches don’t realize the importance of body language and nonverbal communication. The truth is that people will see you before they hear you speak, and how they see you influence how they hear you.

If we are trying to make a good impression – both socially and in business – we often smile and hold contact the other person’s eyes as we shake their hand. The difficulty is that we give off thousands of other unconscious signals through our body language that other people will ‘read’ instantly and instinctively.

By shaking their hand or standing in a particular way, we might trigger off old memories in the person we are trying to impress. Maybe an old friend stood exactly like that, in which case our advances might be treated sympathetically. But if we stand like the back-stabbing colleague who has treated them badly, our advances are likely to be treated as hostile.

Body Language is all the non-verbal communication we make – both conscious and unconscious. Toastmasters Speech 5- Your Body Speaks, helps us to develop the non-verbal communication.

Objectives of Project Toastmasters Speech 5
  • Use stance, movement, gestures, facial expressions and eye contact to express your message and achieve your speech's purpose.
  • Make your body language smooth and natural.

Tips and Technique

Remove unnecessary movements – The Toastmaster Manual for this project is excellent and one of the most important advice is “any movement during your speech should be purposeful.” Almost every person becomes nervous as he faces the audience. (There are exceptions but extremely rare). This nervous energy unconsciously flows as distracting and noisy movements. Ask your mentor or other fellow members to highlight your most distracting physical mannerism. We all have one. Whatever it is, make a goal in this project to consciously remove or reduce it in this speech project.

Avoid Forceful Gestures – One of the common mistakes speakers make is trying to force gestures into every sentence. This results into a very artificial and awkward delivery. Remember the goal is not to provide continuous physical interpretation of every work spoken. Instead the goal is to use gestures selectively to provide the maximum impact and make the gestures appear natural. Remember gestures are not about hand and body movement, it is also about your facial expression. Remember, the face gets the maximum attention from the audience.

What i did for my speech?

I have a habit of staying freeze in one spot during a speech. My legs gains at least 100kg of nervousness and doesn’t move. In fact that is one of the reasons why I lost the Humorous speech completion.

  • I made provision to walk a few steps. 
  • Used sarcastic humour (which needs to be delivered as straight face).
  • Highlighted few points where I can display emotion

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