Saturday, May 12, 2012

The Speaker's Samjan

2-Way Traffic


We've noted the benefits of speaking before, and a recent PsyBlog article adds another.
Janis and King (1954) tested this by having some participants give a talk while two others listened. Then they swapped around and one of the passive listeners gave a talk to the other two on a different topic. 
What emerged was that, on average, people were more convinced by the talk when they gave it themselves than when they merely heard it passively. This suggests that we really are persuaded more strongly when we make the argument ourselves, even if it isn't in line with our own viewpoint. 
The same trick works with attitudes to smoking. People are more put off smoking when they deliver an anti-smoking message than when they passively receive it (research described in Brinol et al., 2012). 
We see the same effect for self-confidence. When people are told to present themselves in a self-confident way to others, they actually feel more self-confident themselves.
Not only does an effective presentation empower an audience, it exerts an equally powerful effect on us as the speaker. We must call forth our faith in order to deliver to others a case for our faith, so in the moment preceding our time to open our talk in sabha, let's appreciate how we've taken one step closer to goal we wish to communicate passionately.

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