As We Speak has been selected as a New York Post Notable Career Book!
More features and interviews:
Peter interviewed on Bloomberg Radio/“The Hays Advantage”
Huffington Post review
Chicago Tribune feature on Peter Meyers and “As We Speak.”
KRON Weekend Morning News: TV interview with Peter Meyers
KGO Radio, “Ronn Owens Show”: Live interview with Peter Meyers and Shann Nix
Chicago Public Radio: Peter Meyers interviewed on “Vocalo”
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One of the best ways to gauge your own state is to check your breath: When you’re inspired, you’re full of breath. (When you’re out of breath, you’re expired).
How are you breathing today? At this very moment? Are you inhaling deeply? Or are you short of breath?
We’re inspired today by the re-launch of the Stand & Deliver web site and the publication of As We Speak.
To mark this moment of inspiration, I thought it would be appropriate to return to the breath. As We Speak is meant to inspire you to achieve breakthroughs in your own leadership and communication. But the book is also about the physiology of inspiration — about how to manage your own emotional and psychological state through control of the breath and body. Here is a short excerpt from the book about breathing. I hope you find it useful — and inspiring.
When we work on voice, we begin with breath. Your voice is carried by your breath. Put one hand on your chest, and one hand on your belly. When you breathe, notice which part pushes out. If, when you inhale, your chest goes out and your belly goes in, you are doing what we call “chest breathing.”
Now practice breathing so that when you inhale, your belly pushes out against your hand as it fills with air. When you do this, a powerful muscle called the diaphragm flexes down, allowing the oxygen to reach the lower capillaries in your lungs. When you breathe out, the diaphragm flexes up, emptying your lungs. This is called abdominal breathing, and it is the type of breathing that professional singers and actors use to support their voice.
When some people get nervous, their chest and throat tightens up like the neck of a balloon. This will impede your airflow. As you breathe, consciously relax your chest and throat. You can drop your volume, speak very quietly, and still have a round, fat sound that is easily heard.
You don’t have to speak louder; you just have to be more generous. Focus on taking in more air and releasing your breath with the sound. The opposite of generous is stingy, and it comes from holding your breath, as if you were keeping the idea to yourself. The tension in your breathing creates tension in the audience. Release your breath fully, and it will carry the idea.