Another reason why no one watches your YouTube Videos: Your voice sucks. Here’s how to improve it
Do you know what a ninny is? It’s a short word for nincompoop, possibly one of the best words in the English language. It means an idiot.
My voice coach, Laura Hart, referred to women who speak in high-pitched voices as ninnies. She called them whiny. She would always warn me, “Don’t be a ninny!”
Am I calling you an idiot? Absolutely not. But chances are you sound like one. And that’s why nobody’s watching your videos.
You voice lacks breath. It lacks depth. It lacks authority.
And that’s because you’re speaking from your throat. If you want people to watch you, take you seriously and believe in what you say, you need to fix your SOUND.
Here are 6 ways to improve your voice:
- Breathe!: This is THE most important service you can do for your sound. We cannot live without air. Breath is life. Breath is what gives your words power and influence. Breath is what gives your voice the ability to soothe. Speaking on the breath is the difference between someone hanging onto your every word or looking away. Did you know that Frank Sinatra took a year off of singing to only focus on his breathing? It was after that when he blew up to be the iconic Sinatra whom we came to love and will forever be remembered as a legend.
- Go way below your throat: Ninnies speak from their throat. Your influential powers lie in your gut, or conventionally known, your diaphragm. Why? This is where your breath comes from. Take a long, deep breath that fills your belly, and release your sound on the breath. This is also key for moments when you want to speak softly, yet with a lot of force. When you can master that, you’ve mastered the use of your diaphragm.
- Sing sing sing!: If breathing deeply and projecting sound from your diaphragm is new territory for you, singing could help you connect to these practices. For your inspiration, listen to some of The Greats: Frank Sinatra, Nat Cole, Peggy Lee, Aretha Franklin, to name a few….these are stellar examples of singers who mastered their sound by properly breathing through their diaphragm. Take a singing class to learn ways you can warm up your voice and implement these practices into your speaking voice.
- Inflection: All the breath in the world doesn’t matter if your voice is monotone.
Play around with your range.
- Record yourself: Many of us are uncomfortable listening to ourselves, but this is something that you must get over if you want to improve the quality of your voice. Our smart phones make it easy to do so, so no fancy equipment is necessary. Next time you’re doing your morning reading, read out loud and record yourself. It doesn’t have to be for a long time. 30-60 seconds is enough. Do this daily and listen to yourself after each time. Your voice is an instrument, and like with any instrument, practice is the key to mastering it.
- Work with a coach: I wouldn’t be where I am today without the help of Laura. A voice or communications coach can help you discover the potential of your sound and give you the techniques and practices needed to speak effectively, commanding the attention of others.
Your voice is the most important instrument that you have. All you need to do is put in the practice.
Remember, your brilliant ideas aren’t worth a thing if nobody’s listening.
Master your sound and show the world what you have to say.
About the author
Maria Nicholas is a communication coach based in Spain. In her past, she has worked in the LA media industry as a voice and acting talent. Follow her on Twitter to find out more.
What good is having an excellent voice if your audio equipment is no good? You might be interested in our guide to smartphone microphone accessories.