07: Tips to Slow Down Fast Talkers

Hello fast talkers! How many times have you been told that you talk too fast and need to slow down? Did you write ‘talking too fast’ on the ‘Strengths and Weaknesses’ list that you created in Episode 1? While talking fast can come in handy if you’re an auctioneer or reading the small print of a medical disclaimer, most listeners need more time to hear and process what you have to say. In #RealTalkingTips Episode 7, I’ll show you some cool tricks and techniques that you can use to slow down your speech.
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Are fast talkers more intelligent? Is it true that fast talkers are extroverts who think and speak simultaneously rather than thinking before they speak? Do fast talkers have a higher tendency to clutter their sentences with filler words like um, like, a, and so? Is fast-talking a sign of nervousness or low self-confidence? Do people talk fast because they have a lot to say in a short amount of time? While talking fast can come in handy if you’re an auctioneer, reading the small print of a medical disclaimer, or providing humor like John Moschitta in the classic “World’s Fastest Talking Man” FedEx commercials, most listeners need a bit more time to process what we’re saying.

The World’s Fasting Talking Man, John Moschitta, contributed part of his fast talking skills to growing up with five sisters and struggling to get a word in edgewise. So, he turned a potential weakness – lacking respect, time, appreciation, etc. – to a strength that brought him financial gain and national recognition.

If talking too fast is on your ‘My Weaknesses’ list from Episode 01:Real Talking Tips – Your Strengths and Weaknesses, it should be a familiar part of your DNA.

Here’s a tip on how you can embrace that lifelong fast-talking challenge:

When told to talk slower, simply smile, nod in agreement, and appreciate the reminder.

Talking Slower

Let’s explore 6 ways to slow down your body, mind, and speech so others can understand and appreciate what you have to say.

  1. If you move, walk, or gesture slowly, the speed in which you talk will want to match that slower pace and slow down, too.
  2. Breathe in and out slowly a few times before speaking.
  3. If you feel scattered and moving in a million different directions, put your hand on your heart and leave it there until you feel yourself slow down and get centered.
  4. Place one or both hands on a chair, desk, or podium before speaking so the nervous energy is transferred to the object.
  5. If possible, make eye contact, physically react, and connect emotionally with the listener before speaking.
  6. Silently repeat a mantra to give yourself permission to slow down. It could be: “You got this.” “You are enough.” “Remember, they want to hear what you’re going to say.”
hand pointing down 2

Practice Assignment #7: Slow Down Your Speech

1. Create your own mantra that you can repeat silently to yourself that reminds you to slow down. So, the next time you’re in a situation where it’s important that people hear and react to what you have to say, take a moment to check in with yourself. Then, slowly repeat that mantra.
2. Walk slowly to the speaking location.
3. Breathe slower.
4. Put your hand on your heart to settle yourself down.
5. Place your hand on an object.
6. Look at the person first and connect emotionally before speaking.

Fast talkers may need a little adjustment time to deal with the internal battle and unfamiliar pace. With time and practice, you will be able to pick and choose when it’s appropriate to talk faster or to slow down. And if someone tells you to slow down, don’t get mad. Smile, nod, and let that comment put a twinkle in your eyes that your “slow down, my friend” message is appreciated.

Elaine Clark VO Real Talking Tips 01

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