When we observe someone speak, we’re listening for two things: Confidence and emotion. Confidence is a powerful cue that makes people take you seriously. Emotion is an aspect of warmth and makes people find you attractive.
If you want to make a solid first impression or elevate your reputation, avoid these five mistakes that the most confident and exciting people never do:
Mask their emotions
Analysis shows that it takes just a tenth of a second for our brains to recognize emotions conveyed by vocal cues. It’s one of the immediate ways we communicate our emotions to others.
So when you feel proud and confident about an idea or care about something, don’t act casual. Rather, speak with gratitude and motivation.
A person’s body language says a lot about how confident they are, specifically the “steeple gesture.”
Steepling is a powerful gesture used to convince others that you are confident and committed to what you’re expressing.
Steepling is when the palm of our hands are facing each other and we gently place the tips of our fingers together.
Scripting is the biggest destroyer of vocal variety.
People Overly script their presentation and then rehearse all the emotion out of it.
Just Keep your stories and the emotional parts of your talk unscripted. Only write out a few key points you want to remember. This forces you to tap into the true emotions underlying your words.
Use verbal fillers
People use verbal fillers — um, so, like, well, you know — for two principal reasons. First, to stall for time while we are thinking of our next point. Second, because we’re afraid of being interrupted. We believe there isn’t enough time or attention, so we fill our points with fluff words.
Speak with question inflections
The most powerful people avoid question inflections at all costs. When you use a question inflection, your voice pitch raises at the end of a sentence.
When you don’t give away your vocal power, people will take you more seriously and believe in what you have to say