Internalise don’t Memorise

If you’re preparing for a talk or an interview, and you write down the exact words that you want to say first and then try and remember them in the event, you’ve potentially got an

You may get:

  • disconnected from the meaning behind the words, because you’re so hung up on getting exact wording right.
  • disconnected from the audience because you’re in your head rather than with them.
  • distracted by trying to remember the correct words or phrases.
  • frustrated if something you said didn’t come out exactly as you wanted it to.

In all these cases, you’ve – even temporarily – lost connection to the meaning and the emotion behind the words.

And that means you don’t have this bridge of connection with your audience.

My recommendation is, wherever possible, try and internalise the ideas and feel the meaning behind what you’ve written.

Internalise, don’t memorise.

If you do have to memorise for any reason, and this sounds obvious I know: make sure that you know the content well enough that you can actually get reconnected with what happens behind your words. You’ll need to go past the ‘rote’ learning of words to the point where you get back in touch with the ideas you’re expressing.

Because we always want to sound authentic and connected to what we’re saying, don’t we? And as an audience member (or perhaps you do run interviews at work), you’ve probably had experiences where this didn’t happen. You wanted to get the whole person, and it didn’t happen.

It’s like a screen or filter is in the way, sitting between you, and the words are projected onto that screen.

The direct unfiltered connection is disrupted or lost: and we don’t enjoy this. Remember that the best public speaking or presenting is about being conversational and real.

Best wishes with your speaking!


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