THE IDES OF MARCH 2018
Earlier this month we referenced the idea of a person’s voice. Specifically one of the meanings for that word. Which discusses verbally expressing one’s point-of-view. This meaning includes the outlook; opinions; beliefs; and one’s image of themselves in the world. How we share these thoughts with our society; and our need for expressing our view of reality with others.
This concept of voice is integral to a person’s idea of themselves as a ‘first person’ part of existence. It is our belief that our future success as humans is tied to our continued sharing of these unique outlooks. As our willingness for sharing what we have learned individually progresses. For we stand alone in our ability to exchange and collaborate our thoughts and ideas. And our combined efforts work for our mutual, long-term benefit.
But there is another aspect of this word which bares consideration. Which also discusses the nature of our vocal abilities. It is the tonal quality of our voices; the sounds and speech patterns themselves. Although people do often do not consider this (unless they are singing). The human voice is a versatile, and flexible musical instrument; with an impressive range of potential auditory vocalizations. This is important for forming the many different sounds which make up the words, and utterances of our speech.
The more accurately, and faithfully, one grasps these tonal references and speech patterns; the more effective their ability to communicate is. Mastering this aspect of voice not only lead to better English proficiency; but improved skills in almost any spoken language. As with any musical instrument, the ‘time spent on task’ is a crucial element of learning to play it well.
The same holds true for developing speaking skills and effective word choice selection. As well as vocabulary range; understanding concepts; and learning dialects. Even the cadence, and volume level of your words convey a message. It will either bolster, or undermine the message carried by your words. This is one reason why it is important to speak clearly, and enunciate well.
When using one’s speaking voice to its’ fullest potential, provides information on many levels. It can address more than one message at the same time. And indicate other intentions, emotions, or desires. Accomplishing this level of speaking skill can be gained by listening carefully to the speech, and words of others.
Observe how they express ideas with their word choices, and style of presentation. Are they formal? Is it jargon? Is it slang? Do they use complete statements? Or do they speak in the negative? Do they whisper? Do they sneer? Are they direct? Or are they coy? Note the various tools they bring into play, as they present their message. As they express themselves and make sure they are understood.
Of course, the best way to become skilled with a musical instrument is to practice playing it incessantly. This will work just as well for anyone who faithfully practices using their speaking skills. Your voice is a musical instrument which is always with you. And you can practice using it, as you will; either with others, on others, or alone. There are of course, other ways one can study improving their conversational skills.
Some are more formal, such as taking an English course. And some may cost more money such as language software or tapes. You may even gain some insights from information presented on this website. However, experience indicates the most important tools for improving your language skills. They help with speaking more effectively as well as being understood more clearly. In our opinion, those tools are time, effort, and will.
J. A. Stubbs, Editor-In-Chief
Forgotten Lore Publishing, llc