Ruth Mitchell

Member Article

Pause for thought

With Simon Raybould at Curved Vision Theatre

I’m writing this on New Year’s Day (happy New Year everyone!) at my sister-in-law’s house. Her son talks, as many small children do, without breathing in; at least, I swear if he needs to breathe in at all he must do so through his ears, because he never stops talking. After a surprisingly short period of time, I stop noticing this feat, because I’ve tuned him out: I’ve stopped listening. I can’t understand what he’s saying so I stop making the attempt.

Don’t get me wrong, it’s not that he can’t talk properly – he can. It’s just that without any breaks or pauses, I’ve got no time to assimilate what he’s saying, no time to internally make sense of it. Without that pause-time, your presentation is going to suffer too: the knack is to give people as much as they can handle in one burst and then stop until they’re ready for more.

Ifyouinsistupongivingthemallthethingsyouknowatonce you might as well tell them nothing at all – because it won’t mean anything to them. And as I’ve said before, what’s important isn’t what you say, it’s what they hear that counts! Imagine this edition of the bdaily without any punctuation – no commas, full stops or even any headlines. Could you understand it? Unlikely.

So don’t forget your presentation resolution – punctuate your presentations!

As always, questions and comments will get to me at

This was posted in Bdaily's Members' News section by Ruth Mitchell .

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