The number of adult voices I hear which sound like teenagers, preteens, or younger still is astounding. Add the familiar Valley Girl sound to the picture and you have an image which does not project maturity. I am not talking about sounding old. I am talking about a voice which you would call ageless. |
If you were to phone me and did not know how old I was, you would be unable to tell if I was 25 or 75. Because my voice has had training and I have taken the stress or the pressure away from my throat and vocal cords, my voice is not aging as quickly as those whose voices have not had training – although the rest of my body most definitely is!
Your body has 5 vocal resonators. What this means is that when you speak, there are 5 cavities which should be used to vibrate and power your sound. These cavities include the voice box, throat, mouth, nasal passages and chest. Most people rely on only 4 of those cavities. Because the largest and most vibrant of those 5 resonating chambers – the chest cavity – is not being used, the resulting sound tends to be higher in pitch, thinner in quality, and most definitely young-sounding.
To change you voice placement, you must 1st learn to breathe with the support of your diaphragm because you need air in your mid-torso region to support your sound. Most people rely on the upper portion of their chest to breathe. This is unfortunate because this type of shallow or lazy breathing not only affects how you sound, but it also increases your tension or stress. (By the way, all mammals breathe with the support of the diaphragm. We humans are born breathing properly but as we develop we stop deep breathing and revert to upper chest breathing.
Your 2nd step is to find the optimum pitch of your voice which will be in the lower register of your vocal range. What this means is that your ‘real’ voice will most likely be deeper in pitch and fuller in quality, similar to that of Kathleen Turner, George Clooney, Felicia Rashad, Morgan Freeman, Angelina Jolie, and James Earl Jones.
When you are powering your voice in this manner, you will notice that you will be able to increase your volume without shouting and without hurting your throat because your chest cavity will be doing more of the work.
Your 3rd step is to make your new voice a habit so that you don’t have to think about it. How do you do that? Use your new sound as much as possible throughout your day, both professionally and personally.
You needn’t be stuck with a voice which sounds too young. Change your voice placement and you will be amazed at the difference in how you sound and the image you project.
The Voice Lady Nancy Daniels offers private, corporate and group workshops in voice and presentation skills as well as Voicing It!, the only video training program on voice improvement. If you would like to see and hear a dramatic change, from childlike to warm and mature, watch Trish's 'Before & After' video clip.
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