How to Choose a Motivating Topic
The topics for a motivational speech can vary widely. Any appropriate motivational topic can be used to connect with the audience. There are, however, some motivation topics that are more appropriate than others. If you’re tasked with delivering a motivational speech, consider these tried and true topics while in the brainstorming process:
- Overcoming obstacles.
- A life-changing moment.
- The value of friendship.
- Finding significance in the insignificant.
- Finding the silver lining.
- The power of the individual.
- The ability of people to effect change.
These topics, along with others, would be appropriate for a wide range of groups. Whether you’re looking to create an emotional speech or a graduation speech, these motivation topics are a great place to begin. The most successful motivational speeches often include a personal anecdote or story about how an individual encountered an issue in his or her own life and surpassed it. When selected a motivational topic, consider a topic that you yourself have experience in and can share with others.
Motivational Speeches from Movies
Need some inspiration? Want to see a motivational speech delivered perfectly? Why not watch some motivational speeches from movies? Speechwriters in movies have a truly inspiring job. Nearly all movie genres offer some fantastic examples of characters inspiring themselves or others. You can find motivational speeches in many sports movies as well as dramas, thrillers, and family films. Not sure where to look? No problem!
Here are ten best motivational speeches from movies (and the characters that give them):
- Independence Day (President Whitmore).
- The Legend of Bagger Vance (Bagger Vance).
- Remember the Titans (Coach Boone).
- We are Marshall (Coach).
- Rocky (Rocky).
- Braveheart (William Wallace).
- Gladiator (Maximus).
- Miracle on Ice (Coach Herb Brooks).
- The Shawshank Redemption (Andy).
- Don Juan DeMarco (Don Juan).
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While each motivational speech is a bit different, each resonates with the listener because of the diction choices, passion, and delivery. To the audience, it doesn’t matter if the speech is about pride in one’s country, the importance of love, teamwork, or personal ability. What matters is the speech’s ability to state an idea and then convince the listener. A good inspirational speech, whether on the screen or in person, should compel the audience into action.
Motivational Videos for Students
Need some motivation to get you through your day? Luckily, the internet is simply bursting with motivational videos for students. Beyond watching movies with inspiring speeches, you can look for motivational speeches specifically created for youth. This motivation could take the form of being kinder, getting better grades, or becoming more politically active.
Check out some of these favorites:
- This video shows how small, daily acts of kindness can truly change lives.
- Here’s a great video about the power of education.
- A great motivational video on the benefits of being a fool.
- Here’s a political motivation video with over 5 million views.
Looking for a specific video? TED Talks offers hundreds of motivational speeches given by experts in their fields. TED Talks organizes new speeches every month, and these speeches run the gamut from informative speeches to inspiring talks. Watch one a day and you’ll surely become enlightened!
Delivery Tips for a Motivational Speech
So once you’ve decided upon a topic, it’s time to write the motivational speech. One of the most important factors to consider is that of time. Knowing how long the speech must be can drastically impact its organization. Always aim to stay within the time limit. Nervousness often sets in whenever an individual must speak in front of an audience, so it’s a good practice to put in one or two extra sentences because as you give the inspirational speech, you’ll likely speak faster due to nerves. Knowing this, you can be prepared if it happens to you and still meet the assigned time limit.
So beyond writing a speech, what are some good delivery tips? Great question.
Here are some good tips to focus on when giving a motivational speech
- Speak at a regular pace. Try not to let nerves hurry your delivery.
- Make eye contact. Memorize sections of the motivational speech so you can look at the audience while speaking to them.
- Use body language. Use your hands and body language to communicate openness and emphasize important aspects within the speech.
- Plan pauses. Silence is an excellent tool when giving speeches; use pauses to signify important ideas and encourage the audience to reflect on important elements.
- Use rhetorical techniques throughout the motivational speech to maintain audience attention. Common rhetorical techniques include rhetorical questions, alliteration, allusions, analogies, and understatement to name a few!
- Use appropriate language. An inspirational speech for doctors should use different language than an inspirational speech for athletes.
- Be confident. You have to believe in what you’re saying if you expect your audience to believe it and feel inspired.
While practice makes perfect may not always be the case in everything, this advice does hold true for motivational speeches. The more comfortable you are in giving the inspirational speech, the better speech will be received. Therefore, practice! Practice in the mirror to get comfortable looking away from the speech and using appropriate hand gestures. Once you’ve got that down, practice before a small group of people. Ask your friends and family for constructive criticism and improve your inspirational speech before you need to present it in front of a larger crowd.
And remember: the audience wants to be inspired. Be honest, be real, and be truthful: these qualities will always inspire your audience!