“Love challenges, be intrigued by mistakes, enjoy effort, and keep on learning...”
(Carol Dweck, author of Mindset)
Don't fall for the line! What line?
“You're such a great speaker!”
I'm not saying don't accept the praise. Be polite. Say thank you. Then get back to getting better. You can always better your best.
That's the mindset you need. If not, you can fall into the dreaded “Speaker Trap”.
“There is nothing to fear but fear itself.”
“Everything happens for a reason.”
“If life gives you lemons, make lemonade.”
“Live everyday like it s your last.”
“Yesterday is history, tomorrow a mystery and today is a gift. That's why we call it the present.”
“Dream as if you'll live forever. Live as if you'll die today.”
Keep calm and....well, anything...
Take most quotes and shove them. Here's the test. If your audience can finish your quote before you do, then it's probably not worth using.
The 2 most important parts of your Speech:
Your Opening and Your Closing.
For keys on opening your speech, check out my previous post, Master Your Opening.
Let's talk about your closing here. Your last words linger, so make them count. Many a great speech has been ruined by a mediocre end. This makes no sense. To put effort into your whole speech, getting your stories just right, statistics on point, audience interaction A+, then pay no attention to how you end the speech – is a mistake. If nothing else, start with solidifying (and I would suggest memorizing) your opening and closing. The audience will forgive some slip ups and imperfection in your speech, and they will forget anything they didn't like if they like and feel your ending.
Consider these 3 strategies when closing your talk. Of course there are many ways to close a speech. The key is to pay attention to what you want to achieve, and to be deliberate when you deliver the end of your talk.
Kwesi Millington helps speakers to connect with their audiences and master their messages using the power of storytelling in their speeches & presentations. He is a Certified Public Speaking Coach & Youth Mentor.