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Effective communication over the phone requires a bit more attention than in-person or via email/text since you can’t read the other person’s facial cues or review what you’ve written. A common issue many people have on the phone is talking too fast. If you talk too fast, it can make it difficult for people to understand you or make you come across as lacking confidence. Slow down when talking on the phone – check out these three easy ways:

 

    1. Break Down Your Common Phrases

To start speaking in a more intentional and slower manner, consider the way in which you currently say common phrases on the phone. Write them down, and then as you speak them aloud, take note of when you tend to take pauses naturally. Then, practice speaking those same phrases, but with more breaks. For example, if you tend to say, “Hi, my name is___, how can I help you today?” but only take a pause after your name, you could practice also including a pause after, “Hi.”

 

    1. Make a Conscious Effort to Breathe

If you’re a fast talker on the phone, you’re likely not taking the time to breathe as much as you should and are being long-winded. To slow yourself down when you’re on the phone, make a conscious effort to breathe. For example, stop and breathe before you begin talking, then purposely stop and take a breath between every sentence or topic. The added benefit of breathing more when you speak, is that it will make it easier for you to focus on what you want to say and be less prone to rambling.

 

    1. Get Comfortable with Silence

Often the reason behind talking fast on the phone is because it can feel awkward to have any lapse in the conversation. However, pauses and times of silence often feel much longer in your mind than they come across to the person on the other end of the line. Try to start cultivating the mindset that silence is okay sometimes and that you don’t need to fill every moment of the conversation. It may feel uncomfortable at first, but soon the awkwardness will fade as you realize it actually helps the conversation, rather than hindering it.

 

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