Our Little Books recently participated in an East Bay Women’s Network day-long workshop entitled, Speak (and Write) to Sell. I co-taught the workshop with the amazing Warrior-Preneur, Ann Evanston. Ann started speaking in Toastmasters when she was in 7th grade and just happens to be an Our Little Books’ author, so she knows what she talks about! We had 35 people who wanted to improve their business ROI by connecting to their selves and becoming more authentic in the presentation of their story.
From the feedback, it was a very successful, interactive working day. Everyone confronted their fears about writing (“I can’t write anything!”) and speaking (“What? Stand up in front of a crowd and tell a story?”) by actually doing those things. No one walked out of there with bleeding wounds so everyone survived and connected to an inner core that will allow them to be more authentic in their businesses in the future.
One of the bottom lines of the program that I hope everyone heard is that: writing is meant to be read! Whether you write a book, blog, article, or just in your daily journal, everyone should be reading their writing out loud, even if only to yourself in a mirror. Otherwise, our brains/eyes can play tricks with us in our writing.
We know what we want to say, so that is what we read. However, it may not be what is actually on the paper! When we read our writing out loud, we add another sense to the mix. When we hear what we wrote, it often times is not what we wanted to say, even though our eyes are telling us it is right. Also, reading out loud can also confirm that you ‘nailed it!”, taking away that satisfied sense of, ‘yup, that’s what I meant!’.
So start reading your writing out loud. Read to your spouse, your kids, your friends, or anyone who will listen to you! It is great practice and the more you do it, the more comfortable you will become with reading out loud (which will lead to comfort when speaking). The side benefit will be that you will find that your writing will become more clear and exactly what you really wanted to say all along! So, I'm listening...