So, what are you communicating? Take a look for yourself
There are several ways to become more aware of your natural non-verbal habits.
One of the most effective exercises is to record yourself while speaking followed by watching/analyzing it. It doesn’t get more telling than that – especially if you record yourself for longer than a few minutes; those natural tendencies will appear and you’ll begin to understand what others see.
As an uncomfortable as it may be in the beginning, think about the benefits of actually seeing yourself in that way. Being aware allows you to be in greater control; and while you may not be able to immediately overcome all of your distracting habits, you can at least begin to eliminate them one by one.
In preparation for a presentation, be cognizant of these three things:
1. Take stock of what you look like in the mirror.
Don’t be overly critical of your appearance but be objective.
Did you cut yourself shaving? Clean it up. Are you wearing a suit or ensemble that doesn’t quite fit right anymore? Find another set of clothes. Having a bad hair day? Take the time to fix your hair.
2. What you don’t want to do is distract your audience by having them think, “Hmmm … something’s out of place here.
His tie is too short. His button is unbuttoned. Her blouse is covered with lint.”
Because once an audience starts thinking about your appearance they’re not going to remember a word you say.
3. Try to assume a role the way an actor does.
Carrying yourself with a positive self-image—communicate those positive messages and statement out loud to yourself.
We all know the adage, “actions speak louder than words” – and when it comes to speeches and body language, that can certainly apply. We make statements before we even say a word, how we dress, our posture and how we move and interact all send messages.
Be in as much control as you can be and understand what your non-verbal messages are communicating.