Want to speak with authority? Want to sound like you know what you’re talking about? If your message is about taking action, then you need to add movement to your message. Let’s explore how to honor the verbs and improve speech communication.
Verbs open the door to better communication.
Verbs are in almost every sentence. Verbs are used to show action, occurrence, and state of being. There are transitive and intransitive verbs. There are two principles of verbs: 1. Verbs can be used to show when an action happened. 2. Verbs can be used as an adjective. Verbs can also be active or non-active. VERB is a complex four-letter word. No wonder people forget to honor the verbs and give them meaning.
Speech Communication coach Elaine Clark dives into the importance of adding vocal and physical action to verbs in Real Talking Tips Episode 14.
VERB – The Complex Four-Letter Word
Okay, I’m going to simplify it. Verbs = Action. That means, when you say a verb you need to have some sort of body movement that corresponds to the action. That movement will be heard in the voice… whether big or small, depending on the type of verb.
Okay VERB geeks. I know what you’re thinking. There are Active Verbs and Static Non-Active Verbs. Why should ALL verbs have action?
Action Verbs are obviously bigger. They include:
Arrange, Brush, Climb, Drink, Eat, Fight, Give, Hide, Invite, Jump, Knock, Lift, Move, Negotiate, Open, Present, Question, Reach, Smile, Tackle, Uncover, Vacate, Walk, Yawn, Zone Out.
Non-Action Verbs are subtler. They may be a head nod or shake, shoulder shrug, eye movement, or an internal response. Examples include:
Agree, Believe, Contain, Doubt, Envy, Forget, Guess, Have, Imagine, Jeopardize, Know, Like, Matter, Notice, Own, Prefer, Remember, See, Think, Understand, Value, Want.
Verbs are easy to comprehend. Way easier than pronouncing difficult nouns, like certain cities, medical or business technology, or even some people’s names. The verbs tie the nouns together with a big or subtle action.
The way to sound authoritative is to give action to the verbs. By giving verbs movement, you sound like you know what you’re talking about.
VERB – Drill Down
Here we go with the Real Talking Tips Micro Learning Lesson 14. Feel free to practice along with me in the podcast or vidcast.
In 1839, Henry Fox Talbot created the first glass negative.
Eastman made many photographic improvements over the next twenty years.
Now you can captivate your audience.
It’s important to complete the course before using the product.
This whole new product will change the way you do business.
You must climb the mountain to get to the top.
I’ll drive you to work.
Whadda ya say I beat you in chess one more time.
Let’s walk to the meeting.
I understand what you’re saying.
If your message is about “taking action,” you need to add action to your message. Practice these lines in a mirror and observe your movements. Did you use your hands to gesture, shoulders to shrug, eyes to look, head to nod in agreement, or some other form of physical movement?
Verbs are an important element in effective communication. If you’re not already doing so, start honoring the verbs and giving them movement. Communication is about taking the audience on a journey so they feel and take action.
Hey, and while you’re active… I’d love it if you would subscribe, download, and share Real Talking Tips. We’ll tie this speech communication element together in Episode 15, when we explore Nouns!