If others ask you to repeat yourself – a lot – is it because your diction is not clear? Too often, those who are asked to repeat themselves are not being understood because of unclear or indistinct articulation or diction. |
There are certainly several other reasons we are asked that timeless question, “What did you say?” It could be that you are soft-spoken or perhaps you mumble or it could even be that you talk too fast.
My focus here, however, is to discuss the lack of good diction. And, I am not just referring to those in which English is not their 1st language. There are many native-born Americans whose diction is not clear because of a drawl or a twang or a dialect which is difficult to understand.
The most important reason for verbal communication is to share your ideas or your thoughts with others. If your diction is such that others do not understand your words, then you might as well not speak. Nothing is more frustrating for both listeners and speakers than this lack of understanding because it results in poor communication.
If you know that you are not being understood because of your diction, one of the best means of solving the problem is with a voice training program. By learning how to change the way you place your voice, you will find your diction improving automatically. It is fascinating to see and hear how this works.
If you are like most people, you power your voice primarily by means of your throat and vocal cords. When you produce voiced sound in this manner, you have no control over the quality of your voice, your diction, your speed, or your volume. However, when you change how you produce your sound, you will find that you gain this wonderful control over every aspect of your voice. The reason is because you will be using your chest cavity to not only power your sound but to amplify it. (For those suffering from vocal abuse, this is the only way of stopping that abuse, aside from not talking!)
My goal is not to have you eliminate an accent, the southern drawl, or the Texas twang because those attributes are part of what make you, you. My goal is to have you speak distinctly so that you are not asked to repeat yourself over, and over, and over again.
Verbal communication is a vital part of your life, both professionally and personally. Learn to speak distinctly and you will be surprised at how much better you are in communicating your message!
The Voice Lady, Nancy Daniels, offers private, corporate and group workshops in voice and presentation skills as well as the Voicing It! the only video training on voice improvement. If you would like to see a wonderful improvement in volume control and diction, watch Mohammad's ‘before & after’ video clip at Nancy's Voice Training website.
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