Friday, December 14, 2007

Putting Your Best Voice Forward

I attended a networking luncheon this week for enterprising women, and I entered into an interesting, and unexpected, discussion with one of the attendees.

We went around the room, introducing ourselves, so that we could connect with each other after the meal, exchange business cards, etc. People laughed when I annouced my book HOW TO MARRY A MENSCH, as they often do. It typically raises curiosity and discussion from singles in the room.

As I was preparing to leave, a woman approached me. Being the love coach that I am, I immediately thought she was going to ask me about meeting someone, and the wheels started to turn about my dad's friend who I blogged about earlier. Hmmmm...maybe she could be someone for him?

That wasn't what she had in mind. Turned out she is a speech pathologist/coach and works with individuals looking to improve their speaking voices. She wondered if any of my coaching clients ever had that need, or if I could suggest how she might target the singles arena to promote her service.

She raised a point that is very valid. You can look great and have a lot to offer a potential mate, but do the tables turn when you open your mouth? What is the quality of your voice? Is it pleasing? Do you have an accent that you'd like to work on? Are you easily comprehensible? What is the manner of your speech?

Whether on a personal, or professional level, your voice says a lot about you. It's something, beyond the obvious, to think about when you're out there socializing. For example, if you are pursuing online dating and mostly emailing prospective dates....what happens when you ultimately either speak on the phone or meet? Until then, they hadn't heard your voice. Is it a turn-on or turn-off? You can work on it, if need be.

Don't just make a statement with what you say, but consider your delivery as well. It is within your control to put your best speaking voice forward, and you're worth it.

Saturday, December 1, 2007

Building Conversation Skills

My dad has a friend who is divorced with two grown kids. He's been on his own for quite some time, and as much as he loves women, he's not looking to get remarried. He was left with a lot of hurt from his first wife. Things did not end amicably, and he carries with him considerable bitterness. Thankfully, not toward women in general.

He is retired, so has plenty of time on his hands. His routine du jour has becoming frequenting java hangouts. Sure, he loves coffee....good coffee....but the ritual goes beyond that. Coffee joints have become his place to oggle, and he has it down to a science.

His top two spots are Starbuck's and Dunkin Donuts. On any given day he is at one or the other or both. He prefers the coffee at DD to Starbuck's, but likes the women better at Starbuck's. He says it attracts a more upscale, professional crowd. And, he would know. He's there early in the morning as they are likely on their way to the office. And, he oggles.

Now.....I see nothing wrong with oggling per se. However, doesn't it get frustrating? He's respectful about it. He enjoys admiring women...but wouldn't he also like to talk to them? He is shy. So, he looks from afar.

My dad, on the other hand, will talk to almost a fault at times. He has always been Mr. Social. got me thinking. One of the points I always make when I lecture to singles is that you can't just show up someplace. You have to involve yourself. Smile at people, get a conversation going, etc. I will address the subject of flirting at length in a future post, but I want you to think about those situations where you choose not to endeavor to speak to someone. Oggling is always an option, but in the long run, you'll probably be a lot happier if you worked on your conversation skills.