Spanish Subjunctive – Regular Conjugation of the Subjunctive Present Tense

Fully understanding what the subjunctive is used for is difficult to comprehend for many English speakers as it is an area of grammar rarely studied in English, due to the fact that the subjunctive is seldom used. However, in Spanish, the subjunctive is widely used and as such must be studied thoroughly.

Before looking further into the many irregularities that are commonplace within the subjunctive at is advisable, as it was when first being introduced to Spanish verbs, to start with the most basic of conjugations…the subjunctive present tense regular.

Regular Verbs in the Subjunctive Present Tense

Conjugating regular verbs in the subjunctive is quite straight forward as the examples below show;

Regular -ar Verbs

If you take the present tense conjugation of the indicative (shown on the left of the example) and change the ‘a’ in the ending (‘o’ in the first person singular) to an ‘e’ :

Hablar – to speak

  • Hablo hable
  • Hablas hables
  • Habla hable
  • Hablamos hablemos
  • Habláis habléis
  • Hablan hablen

Regular -er Verbs

Exactly the same as the regular -er verb except you change the ‘e’ in the ending (‘o’ in the first person singular) to an ‘a’:

Comer- to eat

  • como coma
  • comes comas
  • come coma
  • comemos comamos
  • coméis comáis
  • comen coman

Regular -ir Verbs

Simply remove the present tense endings and replace them with the same endings as used for the present tense subjunctive -er verbs:

Abrir- to open

  • abro abra
  • abres abras
  • abre abra
  • abrimos abramos
  • abrís abráis
  • abren abran

Regular Stem-Changing Verbs

It should also be noted that -ar and -er stem changing verbs carry over the same stem changing characteristics from the indicative present tense and also follow the regular pattern of change in the subjunctive as above. However, stem changing -ir verbs do not and are irregular.

Cerrar – to close

  • cierro cierre
  • cierras cierres
  • cierra cierre
  • cerramos cerremos
  • cerráis cerréis
  • cierran cierren

Mover – to move

  • muevo mueva
  • mueves muevas
  • mueve mueva
  • movemos movamos
  • movéis mováis
  • mueven muevan

Should you require information about how and when to use the Spanish subjunctive, the article; ” Spanish Subjunctive – When Should You Use the Subjunctive in Spanish? “, is extremely informative and well worth a read, especially if you are still uncertain about when to use the subjunctive.

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Birthday Presents for Boyfriends – 10 Ideas That He Is Sure to Love

Whether you’ve been going out with each other for two weeks or two years, when it comes to your boyfriend’s birthday, it’s not always easy to choose the right gifts. However, here are 10 ideas that may provide the inspiration you need as you main to make his day extra special.

1. You can’t go wrong with CDs and DVDs. They make for the perfect main gift if you’re a new couple and an ideal extra gift if you’ve been together a long time. Plus, finding out what type of music and films he likes should be a fairly easy process.

2. Another choice that’s relatively safe and always well-appreciated is clothing. The better you know him, the easier it should be to choose something he likes. Plus, this is the perfect opportunity for you to dress him how you want him to look!

3. If your man loves music, the perfect gift for him may be tickets to see his favourite bands/artists performing live. Do a search by the band’s name or by venue to see what tickets are available.

4. Comedy is the new rock and roll, with big name comics undertaken huge national tours each year. If there’s a comedian your boyfriend thinks is hilarious, tickets for the two of you to go see them could be a great gift for him.

5. When it comes to choosing birthday presents for boyfriends, you may find the perfect gift by thinking about things you can do together. A short break to a foreign city or a nice hotel could be memorable treat for you both.

6. If your boyfriend’s a sports nut, you may want to choose a gift that’s based around his favourite team or the sport he most likes to play. Memorabilia, tickets or equipment could all make for great gifts.

7. Boys love gadgets, especially electronic items, so if he needs a new TV, DVD player, games console or computer, these could be ideal presents. They are, however, very expensive, so may not be suitable for couples who haven’t been together long.

8. If he already has a games console, ideal gifts for him could be the latest video games. From zombie apocalypses to superhero adventures, there are plenty of cool releases that he’s bound to love.

9. Many men are car mad and if your boyfriend falls into this bracket, it could be worth thinking about gifts that benefit him and his vehicle. It could be something as simple as new car mats to an extravagant gift such as a new stereo system. Either way, he’s bound to love it.

10. If your man loves a specific bar or restaurant, you may want to consider getting him vouchers. Many bars now offer vouchers that allow people to use credit to enjoy great nights out or exchange for food.

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Magic Tricks Are Great Presents at Christmas

There are two specific types of gifts that you can give to your children: one is a new toy that they will play with and eventually forget and discard, but another is a rewarding gift that will enlighten and enhance their lives. Magic tricks are great presents for Christmas. Magic or the act of performing there of, is a skill of implied deception and observance that requires a strict level of concentration and dedication in order to be successful. Magic is also fun! Sure the newest toys on the market are shiny and attractive, but magic is a much more important gift for both children and adults. While adults can always use the cognitive benefits of magic, the fun that it brings is also undeniable. Even though the skill of magic is fun and enticing, it also brings a coordinate boost to anyone who undertakes it.

Why tricks are great presents for Christmas? What else lets children have fun and interact with others in an intelligent way? Magic is also a great party activity. Magicians are able to captivate entire crowds by using their skills and a magic trick as a present is a great entrance into this world for anyone. Children love magic and even better, they love to make magic! By telling a child that you are going to give them the gift of using magic you are making their imaginations explode with intensity and ability. Other toys will only be added to a crate in the future or forgotten about in a bin under the bed, but magic tricks are memorable items that will continue to entice and entertain both the one performing and the ones being performed.

Tricks are great presents for any holiday. Much like when you give someone a book for a gift in hopes that the literature will enhance their knowledge, magic tricks help to enhance the mind of those who practice it. Not to mention, magic is a captivating art form that draws upon our own attention and uses it against us for a great shock. Magic is fun and giving a magic set or a simple magic trick as a gift can start a path of performing magic for anyone who receives it. It is a great alternative to typical action figures or dolls for Christmas. These gifts serve no purpose, but for an occasional play. Magic tricks however, are a constant adventure for the mind and the eyes.

This Christmas don’t waste your gift on something silly that will contain no additional benefits or enhancing experiences for your loved ones. Life is about growing smarter and more fulfilled and magic tricks can provide a fun, compelling experience that will strengthen the mind and result in a smarter, more focused child that also is able to perform magic! Magic tricks make great presents for Christmas, don’t miss out on buying your loved ones one this holiday season. Sometimes magic is the key and as a gift, magic is always the key.

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Why Whiteboard Presentations Save Headaches, Time and Money

Ever wonder why whiteboard presentations are so popular with creative teams? If you want to start saving headaches, time and money…whiteboard presenting is the way to go.

More and more teams use whiteboards to collaborate, design and share ideas. Game designers. Creative marketing teams. App designers. Innovation groups. Product teams. Engineers. Sales teams. Strategists. Writers. Oops…did I forget someone? It’s a growing list and more than likely your team is part of the wave.

What’s so great about whiteboard presenting? Let me count the top 7 reasons why people prefer to head to the whiteboard to share ideas.

1. Fast Flow Of Ideas

A whiteboard spells speed. Grab a marker and whip out an idea. You don’t have to struggle with slides. You don’t have to struggle over the perfect script. You don’t have to create a perfect rendering of a design. Just sketch and go.

2. Easy To Change

In addition to flow of ideas, there’s something wonderfully liberating about being able to erase, change, add and delete. Immediately. Whiteboard sketches are fast to do…and even faster to change.

If you don’t like what you’ve drawn, erase it. If you get stuck, add an arrow, line or shape. If you aren’t certain about flow, step back. Often, a moment of reflection is all that’s needed. You’ll spot a new revision that puts everything in the right place.

3. Instant Improvement

When collaborating with your teammates, it’s easy to stay open to different perspectives. Sketch in several colors. Show options side-by-side. Stay open to instant improvement on your ideas…no matter where you start.

4. All Green

Instead of wasting reams of paper, working at a whiteboard is all green. Respecting and caring for the environment is a smart choice-and if you’re presenting at the whiteboard you’re sending an all-green message to your team, clients and audience.

5. Rapid Translation

Many app designers, product designers and developers agree: working at a whiteboard is a very smart and fast way to build a prototype. Instead of struggling through functional details and tons of code, you can translate your image-based ideas into reality.

In addition, visual thinking is rapid. Many designers and creative people think in images. If you are a visual thinker, working with a marker in your hand unlocks rapid creative thinking.

6. Painless Revisions

Recently I worked with a director who was on his 37th revision of a document. It was pretty painful just hearing about it. But imagine how many revisions he could have sorted through if he’d worked through all the details at a whiteboard. Guaranteed, it would have been a much less stressful process.

Keep this in mind for any type of communication, prototype or product development. Stay in whiteboard zone until everyone agrees you are ready to go ahead. This will saves tons of money, headaches and stress in the long run.

7. Democratic Input

Sometimes on teams, one person dominates. Oops. No, I haven’t been a fly-on-the-wall in your department meeting. It’s just human nature. But in whiteboard collaborative brainstorming, everyone is an equal contributor.

Share the markers. Stay open to input. Track the development of ideas.

If working collaboratively is part of your business (and let’s hope you are nodding your head and saying, ‘you bet it is!’) then working at the whiteboard is central to your success.

Many teams use whiteboards…but have not received training on how to whiteboard effectively. Once people learn the simple step-by-step method, communication increases and collaboration skyrockets. If you’ve got whiteboards on the wall but aren’t using them with your team…take the next step. Get the whiteboard training you need to run creative brainstorming sessions and give high impact presentations.

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Presentation Skills

It’s a well-worn cliche that the brain never stops working, until the moment you stand up to make a presentation. Yes, they can be nerve-wracking things to do but like anything else you can learn to make good, even great, presentations. Think positive!

First of all, why are you making this presentation? Yes, it might be because the boss has told you to do it, but what is the actual objective? What do you want the audience to know or do after your presentation. The answer to this question will help you identify all the facts, theories, figures, stories, etc. that might be helpful to that objective. Make a list. Do some research. Ask other people; in fact, ask your audience what they would like to know. In this way, you can gather more than enough material.

Next, consider your audience. What will work for them? What will engage them, convince them? Relevant factors may be their jobs, age, background, level of education, ambitions, opinions, interests and so on. This will help you decide what material to keep and what to cut out and also what sort of presentation they might appreciate. For example, do they need something short and blunt (because they are busy and/or have short attention spans) or do they need lots of supporting facts and figures (because they will have to present this information to others afterwards)?

How will you structure your material? You will need a beginning, a middle and an end. Remember, it’s all about reinforcing your message: 1. tell them what you’re going to tell them; 2. tell them; 3. tell them what you told them. Within the middle section, which contains all the key points, you should break the information down into sections and then put those sections into a logical order.

As for the introduction, well you only have one chance to make that first impression so it’s worth spending some time on this. A useful principle to bear in mind is A, B, C or in other words: grab their Attention, tell them the Benefits of listening, and show them your Credentials (i.e. what qualifies you to speak on this particular topic.)

What about visual aids: flipcharts, handouts, PowerPoint, videos, etc? Well, it’s true that a picture is worth a thousand words and it’s also true that however beautiful your voice, people will sooner or later become tired of listening to it. So give them something to look at; but make sure it’s relevant.

OK, you have your presentation written and ready, now what? Rehearse, rehearse, rehearse! Practise it in front of the mirror (speaking out loud) and in front of family or friends. This will help you sound more natural on the day, and will help you test your material and the timing.

Finally, two thoughts to help you think positive: 1. nobody wants to sit through a bad presentation so your audience actually want you to succeed; and 2. nerves are natural and good; in order to have the butterflies, you have to have the stomach.

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How to Fill Knowledge Gaps In Your Presentation Skills

Have you ever wondered how executives and busy professionals find time to learn new skills? The answer is simple. They take control of their time and their professional education.

In today’s workplace, many professionals struggle with hectic schedules and a non-stop stream of urgent issues. Yet, to keep up in this kind of fast-paced environment, learning is vital.

Many of the leaders and business owners I work with tell me that they need to constantly learn new skills. Continuous learning is the hallmark of successful leaders.

So it should come as no surprise that competitive executives, who are serious about winning results, take charge of their own professional development.

When it comes to presentation skills, there are many areas that a business professional must learn – and continuously keep fresh. If he or she is serious about giving presentations that get business results.

While you may have taken a presentation course or two in the past, there are new areas, new technology and new trends changing the landscape.

Just to point out a few of the most popular areas right now:

  • How to tell a compelling story
  • How to use persuasive visuals
  • How to inspire action
  • How to be authentic in delivery
  • How to answer questions under fire

Most leaders and business owners also add to this short list by focusing skill development to be effective in new media. This includes:

  • Social media storytelling
  • Video presentationsfor clients and prospects
  • Lead generation webinars
  • Informational and educational seminars
  • Video tutorials

Many seasoned executives have mastered how to be confident and comfortable in front of a live audience. Yet they feel unprepared to be equally effective on camera and only facing a camera or computer screen.

If you are curious about how you can fill your knowledge gaps about presenting, the answer is simple. Take a three-step objective approach.

First, identify the areas you want to improve. This will vary based on your education, training, roles and responsibilities.

Second, get specific online training. Online classes are flexible and an ideal solution to fit into your hectic schedule.

Third, get virtual one-on-one presentation coaching. Personalized feedback is essential so you can leverage your unique strengths and talents.

This 3-step response puts you in charge of your own executive education and allows you to build new skills within the time constraints of your hectic schedule.

Many of my clients find that executive coaching is the crown jewel. Direct and candid feedback is the fastest way to take skills development to the next level.

To make this even easier, my clients like to use video feedback and send in recordings of their presentation. We review the performances in confidential sessions, going step-by-step to fill in knowledge gaps.

If you are serious about growing your professional expertise rapidly, use this 3-step system to make rapid improvement.

Assess your skills, get online training and use virtual coaching to fill knowledge gaps in presentation skills. With a small investment in your education, you can expect to see a dramatic improvement in your presentation skills. 

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How To Nail It With A Powerful Marketing Presentation

Imagine yourself in this situation. You have to impress your boss, co-workers and clients in a marketing presentation scheduled for tomorrow morning. You have less than 24 hours in hand to do what you must. Now the main question is how you do it.It doesn’t matter that you are an introvert and extrovert; you can learn marketing presentation skills in less than 24 hours. You will come across as a professional and no one will ever know that you had to struggle with these four-steps.

Set Your Audience’s Expectations

In communication, 85% is non-verbal. This means that your body language that is the way you look, you stand, you move and the gestures you make each send out strong messages. You would like to keep an open shoulder posture to welcome your audience. Set goals and expectations for your audience. Remind them of the benefits they will receive from your presentation. It’s like I am going to show you where the water is and a bottle of water looks like this when you are thirsty. When they expect more and you deliver less, you have a disappointed audience. When they expect less and you deliver more, you have an ecstatic audience.

Time Your Presentation

Create your presentation depending on the time allotted to you. If you have 30 minutes, you can only highlight the key points. If you have 90 minutes, you can take your audience on a journey, from the beginning to the end with reasoning, ups and downs as well as past to present. Time is precious these days. When your audience takes time out of their schedule to hear what have to say, you better have something important or serious to say. Always leave time for questions and answers. Because you don’t want them to interrupt when you are presenting, you want them to pay attention to what you say. Start on time. Try to end on time. Show that you respect the other’s time.

Organize Your Presentation Visually

Do your best to organize your presentation materials visually. Include a map, a flowchart, a diagram, an infographic, a few graphs and a few tables. Use them to show patterns, trends and key points. Make these visual materials easy to read with a bold font, by highlighting or using arrows and colors. Organise your ideas, information and graphics logically along a common thread. Keep your audience engaged.

Speak Slowly and Clearly

When you speak slowly, you speak clearly. Your audience can understand you much more than when you mumble or rush through what you are saying. Read your presentation aloud a few times to rehearse the lines. Have body gestures to showcase what you mean. Pointing up means “up”, pointing down means “down or drop” while pointing to them means speaking to “you”. Choose simple words instead of long and complicated words.

Doing a marketing presentation is fun when you know that you are totally prepared for it. So, use these tips and make sure you don’t falter.

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5 Ways to Make Your PowerPoint Presentation Stand Out

When making a presentation, it’s all too easy to fall into the trap of relying on your PowerPoint slides to help get your message across. Although PowerPoint may be a great tool to help you present your information in a creative and interesting way, it’s dangerous to rely on it fully as this will just turn your audience off from what you’re saying.

Here are 5 tips to help make your presentation stand out from the crowd.

1. Be Compelling

PowerPoint is a great tool to put together eye-catching presentations, but remember that your audience has come to hear you, not look at a slide. So by all means make your PowerPoint presentation look professional and engaging but don’t forget that your speech needs to be compelling too. Remember, your slides are there to support your spoken presentation, not the other way round!

2. Keep it simple

Don’t overwhelm your audience with a mass of data, graphics and animations. The most effective PowerPoint presentations are simple – charts that are easy to understand, and graphics that reflect what the speaker is saying. It’s been suggested that there should be no more than five words per line and no more than five lines per individual slide. Any images, graphs and animations need to back up the information, not confuse the audience.

3. Be Engaging

Many of us have sat through a presentation where we have spent the whole time looking at the back of the speaker’s head! They have spent so much time reading off the slides, they don’t engage with the audience. PowerPoint works best with a speech that augments what’s on the screen rather than just reading off the slide. Remember, you need to interact with the audience in order for them to engage and listen to you.

4. Don’t use PowerPoint!

There’s a time and place for PowerPoint. It should only be used as an accompaniment to the presenter’s script so let the screen go blank if you need to. This gives your audience a break, but also helps to focus their attention on what the presenter is saying, especially during the question and answer session.

5. Rehearse and edit

Once you’ve drafted your speech and slides then rehearse your presentation. Do this preferably in front of someone else to ensure that what you are saying and presenting can be easily understood. If something comes across as distracting or confusing then get rid of it. Remember to keep the needs of the audience in your mind at all times as they are the ones who will be the ultimate judge of how successful your presentation has been.

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Creative Presentation Openers That Work – How to Capture Your Audience’s Undivided Attention

Most presenters begin their presentation in the usual manner…

“Hello my name is Fred Flintstone and I am here today to discuss technology in pre-historic times.”

While your name can be very interesting (especially to you), it is not a very compelling way to begin a presentation. I hate to be the one to break the news to you, but when you begin this way, audiences usually forget your name and worse yet, they forget YOU!

A great way to begin a presentation is with an attention-getting device that will get the audience EXCITED about listening to the rest of your presentation. Some of the best ways I have found to capture the audience’s attention are:

1. Rhetorical Question – A rhetorical question is a question to which no response is needed. Rhetorical questions are designed to be thought provoking, rather than answered out loud. An example of a rhetorical question might be, “If you were trapped on an island and could only have three things, what three things would you choose?” Not only does the audience begin thinking about how they would answer your question–they wonder how this will tie into the presentation (which by the way, it must) and suddenly–you’ve got them!

2. Relevant Story – Beginning a presentation with a story that directly relates to the topic is another great way to get the audience’s attention. A good story engages our audience’s hearts and minds and immediately draws them in. Make sure that the story is short (using a long story in the introduction can compromise the flow of the presentation) and makes a strong point. Here’s an example of an introductory story used for a presentation on the benefits of a 24 hour Nurse Line. “All of us have had frightening medical situations where the help of a registered nurse could come in handy. Let me tell you about a young mother, Marie, who was terrified when her two-month old infant son Sam woke up screaming in the middle of the night. He was burning up with a high fever and Marie didn’t know what to do. So she called the Nurse Line and they directed her to put him in a cool bath to bring his body temperature down. They stayed on the line with her until she was comfortable that she could handle the situation herself. Imagine having that kind of support available to you at all times of the day and night.”

3. Startling Statistic – A startling statistic can be great opener. For a presentation on drunk driving, you might begin with… “In the 30 minutes it will take for me to deliver this presentation, one person in the U.S. will die in an alcohol related traffic accident.” When using statistics, round the numbers, site your sources, and be sure to present current and accurate information.

4. Analogy – An analogy compares the known to the unknown, helping the audience better understand the unknown. When properly developed and explained, an analogy can be an interesting presentation opener. Here’s an analogy example… “Continuing to use this technology is like being on a lake in a rowboat full of holes–instead of patching the holes, all your time is consumed with scooping the water out of the boat.” You may not understand the technology, but now you know unequivocally, that it is like a sinking ship!

5. Humorous Anecdote – Humor is one of the BEST ways to win an audience over and get them enthusiastic about you and your presentation. Humor enhances the audience’s positive perception of you. When an audience laughs with you, chances are good they are also FOR YOU! The safest type of humor is stories or anecdotes that are uniquely yours. The problems you had traveling to get to your presentation make humorous presentation stories. Your dinner disaster is always good for a presentation laugh. One reminder worth mentioning–only use humor when you can relate it to the subject matter–irrelevant jokes are not suitable presentation openers. Here’s an example of a humorous anecdote… “There is nothing more humbling than the honest opinion of a five year old. I was feeling really good about this outfit this morning (even preening a little in front of the mirror) when my five year old daughter came up to me and said, mommy, are you going to wear that table cloth to work?”

6. Curiosity – Provoking the audience’s sense of curiosity can also help you capture their attention. When we are curious about something, we tend to listen more closely to see how it works out. The TV news trailers you see during Prime Time television often use curiosity to try to entice you into staying up and watching the late news. “Tonight at 11:00, find out what vitamin combination can save your life.” In the presentation realm, you might use a more subtle tactic, “Today, I’m going to tell you three important things that I guarantee will change the way you do business forever…” Because they are curious, the audience will pay close attention to see what those things are.

7. Gimmick – The sole purpose of a gimmick is to capture the audience’s attention, so it makes sense that beginning with a gimmick is a good strategy. An example of a gimmick might be… A presenter who is going to speak about the benefits of a paperless office begins the presentation by dramatically crumbling papers and throwing them away. He/She then asks the audience to throw away all the paper that has been planted in front of them. Note that everyone loves a gimmick, as long as it is in good taste.

Remember, incorporating a good attention getter into the introduction of your presentation can mean the difference between being MEMORABLE or FORGETTABLE.

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Shattering The 5 Most Dangerous Presentation Myths

Are you a natural at public speaking? Not every professional starts out with innate talent. But instead of denying yourself the benefits of charismatic speaking…it pays to shatter the 5 most dangerous myths about presenting.

Anybody can learn effective presentation skills. The very first step is to find an effective training program to show you the exact system for success. Learning new presentation skills is one of the best investments you will ever make in your career.

Many professionals rely on their presentation skills to share ideas, give advice, present opinions, and demonstrate values. Presentation skills training enables people to stand out in a crowd, whether at a conference, in a team, or in front of an important client.

To be extremely effective, it pays to first shatter the 5 most dangerous myths about presenting.

Myth 1: Charismatic Speakers Are Born That Way
Sure, there are professionals who have a natural talent or are blessed with the ability to speak passionately. However, the majority of public speakers, politicians, and people in the public eye did not start out as talented presenters. They learned their skills with training, coaching and rehearsal.

Truth: If they can do it, you can do it. Presentation skills can be learned with step-by-step training.

Myth 2: Presentation Skills Training Is Expensive
Yes, this myth used to be true. And in many circles, this myth continues because there are many experts who will happily charge you a fortune for training. But that’s not your only alternative.

Truth: There are many new alternatives including online, on demand presentation skills training. The best options are those where you can pay as you go, learn as fast as you want, and focus on specific skills based on your own interests.

Myth 3: Presentation Coaching Is Time Consuming
When busy executives want to improve, they opt for individual coaching. The myth is that this is both time intensive and expensive. Fortunately, today there are more affordable alternatives.

Truth: Virtual presentation coaching is a low-cost way to rapidly improve skills. If just one tip increases productivity in planning and presenting effectively, the cost of coaching will be paid back a hundred times over.

Myth 4: You Should Expect Pain and Suffering
Improving skills can be tough. But the myth about tedious exercises, painful rehearsals is pure rubbish.

Truth: To win at presenting, it pays to have some fun. Make sure your learning experience is fun. After all, if you have fun learning new skills, you’re going to have fun using them.

Myth 5: Some Presentations Are Essentially Boring
A lot of people believe this myth. Participants often come to a presentation skills training with this myth forming their core beliefs. While some topics present challenges, test our creativity, and demand our persistence, it is important to shatter this myth.

Truth: There are no boring topics. Only boring presenters.

Ouch. But what about accounting, technical details, tax code, and mandatory procedures? Sorry. Any topic can be made exciting, if you put your imagination into it.

Wherever you are in your career, bust these myths. Challenge and shatter common myths about presenting. Myths get in your way and stop you from taking a direct, focused path to your greatest success.

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