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How to speak clearly so that others understand you: 5 tips

How to speak clearly so that others understand you: 5 tips

June 12, 2024

There are people who, regardless of how much they like to talk, they have problems when it comes to making themselves understood when they do it

Many people express themselves spontaneously and naturally, while for others it is something a little more complex, a task that requires a greater degree of concentration and voluntary control of the speech and the message that is transmitted. It is normal, each individual has its strengths and its imperfections. In this article we will focus precisely on the difficulties when communicating verbally. How to speak clearly and be understood?

  • Related article: "Fear of talking to people: 4 techniques to overcome it"

The problems of expression in the use of language

Language makes us able to describe almost any real or imagined phenomenon and that other people are able to understand the meaning of what we say. It sounds normal and current, but in reality it's extraordinary: basically, we are able to transmit very accurate information and, in addition, introduce "mental images" or ideas in the mind of the listener, the interlocutor.


What makes this skill unique is that we can adapt our words, our sentences and our discourse in general to the circumstances, taking into account not only the content of what we want to say but also the way in which the context can modify Grant meaning of what has been said. It can be said that all the spoken or written messages we issue are unique, because the contexts in which they are created are also unique.

But nevertheless, this adaptive, dynamic and fluid nature of language It also makes it relatively easy to create confusion and misunderstandings.

  • You may be interested: "The 8 types of speech disorders"

Tips on how to speak clearly and be understood

We all sometimes fall into an error when it comes to expressing ourselves or when interpreting what we read or hear, and these errors are, to some extent, shared by the sender and the receiver (less in the case that we try cheat, of course).


In any case, some people are especially prone to generate, involuntarily, difficult-to-interpret messages that usually cause misunderstanding . The following tips to speak clearly can help to improve in this aspect, because the use of language is something learned and modifiable through proper training.

Of course, this series of tips are aimed at helping in the psychological and behavioral aspect of education. If the basis of the problem is an organic alteration of the parts of the body responsible for articulating speech, whether based on muscles, bones or specific areas of the nervous system (including brain, of course). In this type of case, the best possible solution will necessarily pass through the doctor and in the guidelines given to you as a patient.

1. Speak more slowly

This first step is not only in itself a piece of advice that will help you speak in a clearer way; it will also make it easier for you to follow the other tips . It consists not so much in placing pauses here and there in your speech, but in slowing down in general your way of speaking, that is, that it should affect all the words you utter, up to a point. Do tests at home to make sure you do not reach a level of slowness that is artificial. Think that the key is constancy. Trying it once or letting a lot of time pass between sessions will not do much good.


Think that reducing the speed of speech does not have to be a bad thing from the perspective of those who listen to you. There are people who almost always speak in a relatively slow way and, although in some contexts it may draw a little attention, in others it is even positive, because if it is a well-used resource, it adds importance to what is said and it gives a certain authority.

In any case, this step does not have to mark your way of speaking indefinitely, but as we have already mentioned, it is rather an aid to facilitate familiarization with the rest of the tips.

2. Avoid strange references

Many times, communication problems come because to express ourselves we use unknown references for the other person . This happens especially when talking with people who do not belong to our closest social circle or who have a cultural background very different from ours.

The main problem is that in these situations the reference to a book or a movie, for example, does not even have to be understood as such. In this way very confusing situations are created in which the other person does not know exactly what has been said, nor how to respond, since it lacks clues to interpret our intentions in saying that, or even if we said what we wanted or we had a confusion of words.

Therefore, it is advisable to be guided by the information we have about our interlocutor to more or less estimate which cultural areas have more or less knowledge and, from there, to use references, as we should not give up using this resource in our conversations (since they enrich the dialogues and make them stimulating).

Of course, in any case, we must pay attention to, just after using them, see by the expression of the other person if they have been understood or not and, if not, clarify what was meant .

3. Check if you project the voice well

In some cases, the problem when it comes to expressing oneself has to do simply because it is spoken very low, and the rest almost do not listen to us. This can be for several reasons, but the most common is shyness. Those who are very shy and worry about what other people may think about them, they try to "mask" their speech so that possible errors go unnoticed ... at the price that everything they say goes unnoticed.

In this case, it is good to combine voice projection exercises in front of a mirror, as well as to work on the most psychological part of shyness, either alone or with the help of psychologists.

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4. Practice pronunciation

This advice is simple and complicated at the same time. If you want to speak clearly, you will have to internalize the pattern of muscular movements that leads you to articulate the words well, without errors. For that there is no other remedy to practice, but paying attention to the mistakes and, instead of being ashamed of them, take them as a challenge and repeat what has been said , this time correctly.


Over time, the habit of paying attention to what is said It makes it easier to prevent these mistakes before you comets by making sounds that do not touch or by changing words.

5. ... or seek help

In case this type of problems are very complicated, it is worth it to go to the consultation of speech therapists or professionals trained in the field of this type of training, sui well each one will offer different guarantees from their training experience. Choose depending on the type of problem you have detected when expressing yourself : it is not the same to have pronunciation problems as in the relative disorganization of what is said.


How to speak so that people want to listen | Julian Treasure (June 2024).


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