If you have been asked to give a speech at a wedding anniversary party, there is a good chance that you are nervous about two things: writing the speech and delivering the speech. You want to do both well, because 1) you don’t want to make a fool of yourself and 2) you want the couple to be touched by your words. Below are some tips for how to write and deliver a great wedding anniversary speech.
A common mistake is waiting until the day before the party to start writing the anniversary speech. You need time to go over the speech and make additions and corrections. You want to allow time to fine tune the speech rather than having to go with something that you threw together in 20 minutes.
The time to start working on writing the wedding anniversary speech is the day that you find out you’ve been asked to deliver one.
Keep a small notebook with you and jot down thoughts as they come to you. When it comes time to sit down and actually start writing; you will be able to refer to these notes from which you can draw inspiration.
You don’t have to try to be like Conan, but it is a good idea to start the speech with a bit of humor. This will loosen up the crowd and capture their interest.
Tell a Secret
One of the best ways to write a successful wedding anniversary speech is to include a bit of information about the couple that most of the guests may not know. Of course, the secret should not be something that would embarrass the couple. Instead, something cute or quirky, such as a story about how they met or how they eat Chinese food for dinner every Friday night.
Keep in Brief
In general, a wedding anniversary speech should be between three and five minutes. You will start to lose your audience if your speech is any longer.
Practice, Practice, Practice
Bringing a typed copy of your speech is fine, but you don’t want to look like you are reading it. That is why practice is so important. You should practice reading your speech out loud so many times that you start to memorize it. Practice in front of a mirror or enlist your spouse or a friend to listen to you and offer some feedback.
One of the most common mistakes speakers make is speaking too fast. A trick is that it should feel like you are talking just a bit too slow. That usually means that you are speaking at the perfect speed.
Make Eye Contact
Do not stare at the paper. Instead, look around the room. Engage the listeners by smiling at them and making eye contact. If you absolutely cannot bring yourself to do this there is another option. Try looking over the guest’s heads to the wall behind them.
Some novice speakers fly through the entire speech without even taking a breath. Be sure to pause between sentences and anytime you have told a joke.
Using all or some of the above advice will help you write and deliver a wedding anniversary that is memorable for all who hear it.
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