Sharing your message on stage

The Next Top Credit Union Executive presentations are around the corner. I look forward to meeting all of you and hearing about your experiences, as well as what you have learned about yourself throughout this process. I can only imagine what has shifted between nominations to being onstage next Monday.

Moving into the weekend, the following ideas might be helpful. I know you are well prepared and ready to go, and that several of you are meeting with your DDJ Myers coach on site. So, you are good to go and, perhaps, there is one good thought below for you to carry into the weekend and onstage.


Our bodies know how to breathe; it is an automatic function of our bodies and we often forget the value of our breath in managing our commitments, stress, and pace throughout our busy days. Your voice is the channel to deliver your ideas and a good thing to remember is your mouth is not the source behind your voice – it is your abdomen! Practice a speaking posture two to three times a day: stand in a comfortable position, not rigid or slumped. Place your hand on your abdomen, inhale, exhale. Inhale on a count to five, and then exhale on a count to five. Start to feel your abdomen relaxing. Now, inhale and exhale on a count to 10; slow breathing will relax your diaphragm.

Physically, here is what is going on. You have muscles between your ribs that contract with each breath and your ribs swing up and out in the process. The diaphragm contracts and then descends and flattens, which causes a slight displacement of internal organs. Meanwhile, your chest cavity increases size to accommodate the incoming air. During exhalation, your muscles relax and return to their resting position and the lungs force out the air. So, imagine what is going on with short and rapid breaths versus longer, more relaxed breathing patterns. As you practice this breathing pattern over the next few days, notice what is different in your belly, chest, and voice. The breath is a valued asset that creates the sound of your voice!

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