#16 ASK KATARINA: How to give a toast? 🥂

#16 ASK KATARINA: How to give a toast? 🥂

''Hi Katarina, do you have any tips on how to give a good toast? My brother is getting married soon and I will be making a toast but I always get very nervous so some tips would be highly appreciated. Thank you!''

Dear R.T.,
thank you for your question!

I know giving a toast in front of many people can be nerve-wrecking, as it is basically synonymous with public speaking. But no need to worry! I have some practical tips for you to feel more confident at your brother’s wedding, or when making a toast at any social gathering in the future: 

Maintaining a good posture with both feet firmly on the ground can help us increase confidence and highlight the importance of our speech. When delivering a toast, stand up straight with shoulders back. This also ensures your voice carries well.

Maintain eye contact with your listeners as you speak. If the toast is meant for a specific person (like the newlyweds), maintain eye contact with them. This establishes a connection and keeps them engaged throughout your toast. If you find direct eye contact intimidating, you can use a little trick and look at the spot between their eyes instead. 

It is not a requirement to recite your toast by heart. Having brief notes is perfectly okay as it can help you stay on track and ensure you cover all the points you want to make. Holding a physical object (like note cards) is also grounding for the body and keeps your hands occupied. 

Don't rush through your toast. Remember to take pauses for breath, allowing your words to sink in and adding emphasis to key points. Katarina’s trick: If you’re using notes, it is helpful to mark down ''breath spots'', so you know when to take a breath to maintain a good overall rhythm. 

Especially during weddings, a touch of humour or a funny anecdote can lighten the mood and make your toast more memorable. Just be sure to keep it tasteful and appropriate for the occasion, as embarrassing someone shouldn’t be on the agenda. 

While it's tempting to share every detail, keep your toast short and sweet. Aim for around two to three minutes to maintain everyone's attention and respect their time.

And last but not least, remember that every person experiences some sort of nervousness when delivering a toast. So instead of aiming for perfection, we should aim for an authentic experience that comes straight from the heart. Good luck!

Yours sincerely,

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