How long is the public speaking pause? When considering how to pause, the first concern is the length of pause. If it lasts too long, it will appear as thought you don’t know what to say next. As you gain mastery you will discover your own unique voice. You will find what is natural for you.
How to Pause: How Long
If you want a general guideline, start by mentally counting to your self, "one one thousand, two one thousand, and three one thousand."
Three seconds for transitions should suffice. You want to get to the point where you can look at the audience and feel what they feel as you speak and as you pause.
Also make sure you do not do it too often. It may make the talk drag.
This is where your audience to process what they have heard. Even though we can process 400 words a minute doesn’t mean we can remember 400 words. We remember thoughts. At best, your audience will only remember 15-25% of what you say.
It benefits you audience by allowing time for the mind to process what is being said.
It benefits the speaker too. If asking a question, your stopping allows you a second to look at your audience. It gives you a second to physically and mentally take a deep breath.
The trap...human reasoning is the more we talk the smarter we sound. That is a fallacy. If what we have to say is important, allow time for it to sink in. So make it stand out.
Too many words spoken with out adequate pausing is usually a sign of too much material.
Next, when should you pause? The obvious is pausing for punctuation. There are other public speaking pauses to use in a public speech.
Pausing for Emphasis & Drama and Transitions
Pausing to Allow the Audience Time to Think
Speechmastery.com:The Public Speaking Pause Website
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