Welcome to my ClassyTip for this week which focuses on:
- Do People Tune You In or Out?- Tip #11
Have you ever switched a television or radio station because the person’s voice was annoying?
Conversations are a verbal exchange between two or more people, and can run the gamut from light-hearted to critically serious. The atmosphere of a good conversation can create a brainstorming session that is the nexus for a new medicine, an opportunity to cherish a dear friendship, or the chance to discover common interests with a new acquaintance or client.
When carrying on a conversation, two dimensions of your voice deserve special attention in order to create an atmosphere in which your words will be welcomed. Those two areas are the tone of your voice and the volume of your voice.
A good tone of voice has a deeper resonance to it. It sounds pleasant to the ear and adds credibility to words spoken. Because of the skull’s physical structure, fewer men than women have a problem with the tone of their voice, but either can have a whiny, high-pitched or tinny sounding voice that’s difficult to listen to.
Studies show that an irritating voice has one of two results. Either the listener becomes agitated or ‘tunes out’ the person speaking. Neither of these reactions is desirable or beneficial to you.
One quick method to determine if you might have a problem with this is to hold your index finger and thumb over the bridge of your nose when you speak. If you feel a vibration you’re “talking through your nose” creating a whiny, nasal sound.
If you do feel a vibration, say different sounds at different pitches. You’ll feel the differences in the vibration. Work at lowering the tone of your voice. It may be that you’re a shallow breather and learning to breathe from your diaphragm will solve the problem. Or you may need vocal exercises to lower the tone.
If you have a high-pitched
voice, it’s worth the effort to develop
a lower toned voice. Studies have shown that a person with a deeper tone
of voice is perceived by listeners to be more knowledgeable, credible,
and in control than a person with a higher, whiny voice. This is true
for both women and men.
If you’re talking to one other person, your voice only needs to be loud enough for the other person to clearly hear you. Don’t mumble or speak so softly the listener has to strain to hear and follow your conversation. This is exhausting for the listener.
Whether you’re talking to one person, or a group, never talk so loud that your voice infringes upon other people or groups within the room. It’s disruptive and not appreciated. This is not the way you want someone important to learn you’re also at the function.
However, if you’re talking to a larger group, you need to increase your volume so all those present can hear what you’re saying. It’s important to move your head so you make eye contact with everyone as you’re speaking.
Also, when you’re in a group of people, it’s very rude to carry on a “hushed private conversation with someone” and exclude all the others in the group. If it’s imperative that you speak privately to the person, wait until the two of you are alone for that conversation.
A classy person is always cognizant of the people who are in the conversational group, and an effort is made to include everyone in the conversation.
I'm Looking forward to sending you another of my ClassyTips next Wednesday. Until then, have a great week, and don't forget to visit my Forum that answers your questions on 'Becoming the Best You Can Be'.
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