Your Body Speaks: How To Use Proper Movement, Gestures, Facial Expressions & Eye Contact To Communicate Confidence

When we think about giving a presentation, often time our voice is the first thing that comes to mind. How is the tone and the pace? However, effectively using our voice is just one way to engage the audience. Your body, how you position it and the gesture you make, can be equally as powerful as your voice.

Own the Platform

It is tempting to stand behind the podium and give your speech. The most nervous speakers may even trip the podium, as if they are hanging on for dear life, or lean on it. Unless it is a very formal speech where you need to stay behind the podium, a great way to liven up your presentation is to move around the presentation area.

This will keep you relaxed and also keep your audience engaged. You may find that there are natural speaking transitions in your presentation; this is a great time to move to a different part of the speaking area and begin the next part of your presentation.

Give a Hand

Effectively using your hands and gestures in a presentation is a great way to bolster your message. We are not talking about random hand flailing like an angry cab driver, rather, planned hand gestures. For example, if you are giving a speech on five tips to save money, you can use your hands to connect with each of the five points. For item one, you raise one finger, for item two, your raise two fingers and so on. This also helps remind the audience where you are in your list of five tips.

Eye Contact

Eye contact is a great way to connect with your audience. It can be too easy to scan the room while you talk, or focus on some fixed point above the audience. Maintaining short eye contact with different audience members is a great way to keep your audience engaged.

Facial Expressions

Effectively using facial expressions is a great way to add personality to your presentation, and also help make your case. A stone-faced presentation will make you appear cold and lacking personality, which does not make you appealing to your audience. Examples of facial expressions can be smiling, winking, frowning and looking shocked. Well-timed facial expressions can add a little punch to your presentation. Think of it as adding a bit of drama to your presentation.

A Confident Body

The biggest thing you can do is to make sure that how you carry yourself during your presentation conveys confidence. A speaker who appears confident will be able to deliver their message more effectively. Things to avoid include crossing your arms, rocking, hands in the pockets, playing with your hair, hunching over a podium and slouching.

 

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