Why should you take more pauses

Good evening Devansh,

I am having an amazing day - it's been raining here since morning and I do love the monsoon times. How's your day going? This last week while I was reading and researching, I found a great article on 'Pauses in Speech' that I thought I would share with you.

In my experience, fluency is one thing that almost everyone wants in their speech. But often people confuse speaking fluently with speaking continuously which leads to monotonous speech, speech filled with uhhs and umms, and other things, which makes the speech and communication opposite of what we all want i.e. an effective fluent speech.

This article explores the exact points - 'Why you should take pauses', 'When you should take pauses', 'How to take pauses in a speech'.

A pause can be used to emphasise a key point or statistic. For shocking statistics, one can heighten the dramatic effect by combining repetition with pauses. For example:

“According to the United Nations Environment Programme, one-third of all food produced in the world is lost or wasted every year. [pause]”
“One third! [pause]” “In the United States alone, $161 billion worth of food goes to waste every year. [pause]” “$161 billion! [pause]”

I hope you, like me, were able to visualise this small example becoming infinitely more persuasive with the pauses. I will leave you to read the article in detail and feel the power of pauses in your speech yourself.

As Mark Twain said: "The right word may be effective, but no word was ever as effective as a rightly timed pause.”

There is another thing I would like to share with you. I have a peculiar habit of noticing and adopting words that I see my friends and people using in webinars, debates and whatnot. Yesterday, in a seminar, I encountered a few words I felt like sharing with you.

The first one is lacuna. Have you heard of this one?! It means a gap or missing part. The sentence that drew my attention was: "every social media company is trying to capitalize on lacuna in people's social life".

The other two were insipid and penchant -

Insipid - not having a strong taste or character, or having no interest or energy.

A senior recruiter was talking about how one of the red flags they look for is if the person comes out as insipid during interactions.
Penchant - a liking for, enjoyment of, or a habit of doing something, especially something that other people might not like.

Search for penchant's pronunciation before using it. You will be surprised to know how many people, even good speakers, mispronounce this word.

Have you encountered any words in your recent interactions that intrigued you? I would love to hear about them :)


Shubham Gupta
Co-founder, BBR