Everyone has a story to be told.
Every person aims to be a good communicator. Whether at home, school, work, or a social gathering, being a good talker is not only beneficial but also crucial when connecting with other people.
Today we’re wondering if reading can make you a better talker.
Reading certainly helps you to be a better talker, because it improves your vocabulary, gives you information on certain topics, and makes you feel smarter.
Communication skills are indirectly taught to children by their parents. Howbeit, the abilities that kids learn from their parents are formalized and expanded upon when they start going to school.
Students are then introduced to books that teach them how to be good at conversations. This skill is then taught all the way to college.
Today, there are hundreds of books that teach people the art of communication, some of which are aimed at children and students, while others cater to adults. But does reading make you a better talker? And if it does, why isn’t everyone geniuses in small talk and public speaking?
Why reading can potentially make you a better talker?
Reading has plenty of benefits when it comes to enhancing your communication skills.
First and foremost, when you read, you learn words. Reading allows you to broaden your vocabulary and to be able to articulate your thoughts more efficiently.
When conversing with people, you want to be able to get with their levels. If you are a learned person, you can get along with other people’s slang and jargon.
Another benefit to reading is that it gives you more information on a certain topic. Reading keeps you up to date with knowledge that you can share with your friends, family, and co-workers.
Reading will make you sound and feel smarter. People trust someone well-versed in the topic at hand. If you read a lot, people will think you are as smart (if not, smarter) than them.
Finally, reading books teaches you the ins and outs of conversations. You will learn things like body language, tone, and manners when talking to people.
In short, reading teaches you the basic principles of communication.
Which books will help you be a better talker?
If you’re searching for a book that can teach you how to be a better conversationalist, look for communication textbooks.
Many people treat communication and its course as a joke, but the lessons taught in communication can become useful skills that can be applied in a wide variety of fields. Try to learn what they are learning by picking up a communication textbook.
Not only will you learn about the basics, such as the communication model or the history of written and spoken media, but you can also pick up knowledge such as how to articulate yourself when talking in front of a crowd and how to be good at coming up with impromptu speeches.
Other interesting, albeit controversial, books that you can use to better your communication game are novels. Novels are full of dialogues that you can study and emulate.
You’ll be surprised that a lot of people learned to speak fluently just by reading novels. Novels contain a lot of metaphors, big words, and social cues that you can study in order to better your speaking skills.
Finally, you can always pick up a dictionary or thesaurus. I’m not saying that they will directly teach you how to speak, but they are good references if you want to learn more words to make your speech more eloquent and interesting. Just don’t sound like you are trying too hard; you’ll look like a fool.
Why reading isn’t the number one way to being a better talker?
Everything above is true about reading. Yes, it has plenty of benefits. Unfortunately, reading books won’t always make you the best talker.
What do I mean by that? Well, books have limits.
First and foremost, books don’t let you practice communication. Sure, you can read all the communication books that you want, but unless your books start talking to you in a conversation, you are not getting the practice that you need by just reading.
Second, books are only one-half of the communication process. According to the communication model, there will be a sender (in this case, the book) that will send a message to the decoder (in this case, you the reader) to decode.
But reading misses one of the most fundamental parts of communication: the ability for the decoder to send direct feedback to the sender.
Finally, a book can be outdated. The words that were once gnarly in the 80s are no longer lit in the 21st century.
Books can give you insight into how to communicate. But communication evolves, so the style of speaking that was once popular will become obsolete in the next decade or two.
Skills are better honed when you are doing it, rather than just reading or observing it. A book can only give you a guide on how to be a talker.
What are better ways on how to be a better talker?
Maybe try talking to other people?
There are plenty of other ways to improve your speaking abilities, but the number one way to do so is by talking to someone. You can learn and practice communication by interacting with other people.
If you are a little shy at striking conversation with strangers or friends, you can invest time in different spoken media. Watching TV, listening to music, and tuning in to podcasts can teach you about how other people talk.
Ever notice how children copy the words and tones that they see in cartoons? A good strategy in learning how to speak is to mirror the things you see around you.
Are there more ways to be a better talker? Absolutely! Another thing you can do is listen to your teachers.
Listening to teachers, speakers, and preachers can give you hints on how to talk to large crowds of people. Not only will you learn how to speak like them, but you can also pick up their mannerism and their confidence.
There are a lot of ways to improve your speaking skills without relying on books. Broaden your horizons so that you can master your skills more efficiently.
5 easy tips to make you a better talker
You are now familiar with communication and the ways you can learn it. You now want to master it yourself and be able to talk like a pro.
While the skill does take time to learn, there are things that you can keep in mind to be better at talking. Here are five tips that might help you achieve your goal.
- Listen. Listening is the other half of talking. When you listen to other people, you pick up on social cues that will help you communicate more clearly and smartly. Listen to the people you are talking to so you can connect with them seamlessly.
- Talk to yourself. Talking to yourself is not only a good self-coaching strategy, but you can also hear how you sound to other people. You can train by either talking in front of a mirror, writing in a journal then reading it out loud, or reciting book passages and poetry.
- Talk to loved ones in private. It can be intimidating to talk to strangers, much more to a crowd. Start small by talking to a parent, friend, or a loved one personally. They will not judge you if you make a mistake and you can talk about any topic without awkwardness or fear.
- Talk to foreigners. You will learn a lot if you engage with people from another country. Talking to foreigners will not only help you improve your vocabulary, but you can learn how to interact with people without physical barriers.
- And finally, work on your self-confidence. To be able to talk to anybody means you have to be self-aware and confident. Build up your self-esteem to better your image for yourself and for others. People love a confident person, so make sure to be your own number one fan.
Do I have the ability to be a great talker?
Anybody has the potential to be great at communicating. Each person has a voice and a story to share.
Learning how to be an exceptional speaker is a fun and challenging skill that anybody can pick up on. With this ability, you can start conversations with anyone about anything under the sun.
Books are a good starting point for learning, but it is not the only way a person can learn how to speak. Talking to others, watching media, and listening to professionals are great ways to pick up on the skill.
Reading can only take you so far in your talking journey. It is only a piece of the puzzle. The rest is for you to discover, one spoken word at a time.