Developing a strong, dynamic voice is an essential part of projecting confidence and professionalism in the workplace. How do you go about developing a powerful voice? The key is in your breathing. If you’re like most people, you don’t put too much thought into how you breathe: after all, you’ve been doing it all your life with no effort or thought! But developing the type of breathing that effectively powers your speaking voice requires training and practice.
Start by adjusting your posture: whether you’re sitting or standing, you should straighten your spine, as though you have a string running from the top of your head to your tailbone being pulled from above. Now, take a deep breath. Does your chest rise as you breathe in? If so, you aren’t breathing as efficiently as you should. For the most effective breathing, you should be breathing downward and feel your abdomen expand as you do so. This allows you to take in the greatest amount of air for improved projection and strength.
The next step is learning to control the release of air so that you can support your speaking voice for an extended amount of time. Use the following exercises to help you get started.
- Stand straight and take a deep breath; remember, your abdomen should expand, and your chest and shoulders should not rise as you inhale! Breathe in for a count of three and breathe out for a count of five. Repeat this several times.
- Now, repeat Step 1, but as you exhale, count to ten. Try to maintain strong vocal power throughout, and don’t let your voice drop at the end.
- Once you’re comfortable counting to ten on the exhale, gradually increase the numbers, counting higher each time. See how far you can go without decreasing the quality of your voice or straining the muscles of your neck. If you notice any tension in your throat, that means you need to increase your breath support or take another breath.
- Finally, change from counting to producing a sustained “ah” on your exhale. Concentrate on the quality of your voice, the amount of time you can sustain the “ah”, and eliminating all tension from the neck and throat.
Want to learn more? Watch the video below for more great information from Corporate Speech Solutions founder and President, Jayne Latz.
Do you want to take your communication to the next level? Give us a call and see how Corporate Speech Solutions can improve your professional life! Call us at 212-308-7725 or send us an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org to learn more. I’d be more than happy to answer any questions you might have!