Back
The War Room
Question
Post

How did you overcome using filler words?

Had a pretty bad speech impediment growing up and it's transitioned now into constantly using filler words when I talk (like "you know" or "kind of" or "like" etc), specifically when I'm nervous (talking to prospects).


For anyone else who used to stammer and use filler words constantly, what are some ways you overcame it?

๐ŸฅŽ Training
๐Ÿ’ก Education/Resources
๐Ÿ˜“ Advice
28
funcoupons
WR Officer
+11
Kahluapons
Toastmasters can definitely help with this, as well as just good old fashioned practice. It's good you notice your use of filler words, because a lot of people don't. Take on as many meetings/speaking opportunities as you can to get over the nervousness. I also recommend recording your calls (ugh I hate hearing my own voice but this is helpful,) and taking note of where you tend to use filler words, and work on doing less of it next time.ย 
the_sonk_master
Valued Contributor
+4
Sr. SDR
Love this, appreciate it

Also Gong roasts me for my filler words lol
bassinshaps
Catalyst
+5
Territory Sales Manager
My uncle has been a member of toastmasters for over 10 years and has made lifelong friends through it. I honestly almost joined it last year until this whole pandemic thing. Definitely plan on doing it soon.
Riss
Opinionated
+4
I donโ€™t even know anymore ๐Ÿคช
You can make it a team thing...we had a girl in our speech class, whenever she said "like" in any conversation, we had to clap or yell or make an obnoxious sound so she got in the habit of not using it as a filler. It would take the right team and culture so it's not bullying lol (we were all good friends and she agreed to the exercise)

Wo
Wolfof7thStreet
Opinionated
+5
AE
I've done this as well in a comms class!
the_sonk_master
Valued Contributor
+4
Sr. SDR
very interesting, I find it's so easy to just not realize your doing it so having that kind of reaction would be very effective
hurtscuzimold
Opinionated
+5
VP of Sales
Um. Use em. They are actually good guides for the listener.ย 
Incognito
Arsonist
+9
Master of Disaster
practice! be conscious of it in your everyday life as well. If you can get in the habit of eliminating them altogether, it will be easier.ย 
the_sonk_master
Valued Contributor
+4
Sr. SDR
absolutely, I'm slowly trying to!
paddy
Arsonist
+9
Account Executive
Keep a little post it note on your desk or wherever you talk on the phone that has a reminder not to. The more you practice it will eventually become muscle memory.
the_sonk_master
Valued Contributor
+4
Sr. SDR
love it!
Opal
Arsonist
+9
Crocs Model
As everyone else has said, practice makes perfect but also try recording yourself. You can constantly record and refine yourself until you are satisfied with your delivery.ย 
the_sonk_master
Valued Contributor
+4
Sr. SDR
definitely, been doing it alot more and seeing some great results

kelun8
Politicker
+4
AE
Post it notes! Also listen to your own calls! I know it's cringy and no one likes the sound of our voice but that's I've gotten better at not repeating stupid shit I've said and more mindful of my filler words
SalesSage
Opinionated
+4
National Account Manager
Listening to my own calls has helped me tremendously!ย  It does make you cringe initially but I think you get over it.ย  You don't stop learning from them though, so the cringe is worth it.
SA
SADNES5
Politicker
+6
Business Development
Best advice I got, was picture writing/typing the words as you speak. This way you know the next few words you will be saying. It also slows down the WPM that you speak, invoking purpose (you sound like you know what you're talking about)
Beans
Politicker
+5
Account Executive
Practice practice practice.

There are some mindfulness exercises for speech patterns as well.
breezyboiii
Politicker
+5
Sales Boiii
slow things down. give yourself time to think of the next sentence and then speak accordingly, it'll be weird at first and sound like your pauses are going on for years, but practice and you'll find it's quite effective.
Smithy
Politicker
+4
Director of Sales
I thinka good start is understanding what your filler word is and when you normally say it.ย 

some are worse than others. Erm is one of the worst as it can come across like you donโ€™t know what youโ€™re talking about.ย 
TheFemaleWolf
Opinionated
+3
Director of Sales
Recorded myself on video. Back in the day it was a private YouTube channel that my peers and manager could leave feedback on too! Listened back without watching my body language and then watched my body language with it on silent. All about awareness!! Once you hear or see yourself do/say something itโ€™s so much easier to catch yourself and fix it.

side note: my fashion sense as a new AE was horrifying.ย 
Th
Theloanemperor
Opinionated
+1
Loan Officer
Product knowledge and experience. You refine your speech skills every time you make a call. Keep making those calls!
SlinginSoftware
Politicker
+6
Account Executive
Sorry if someone already said this, but simply slowing down what Iโ€™m saying. This is a silver bullet fix for meโ€ฆ
privateryan
Politicker
+5
Director of Sales
I know this isnโ€™t anything different, but just affirming that recording yourself will go a long way. Also +1 for slowing down when you speak.ย 
sahil
Notorious Answer
+13
Deepak Chopra of Sales
Ummmm I didn't.
Cothrock
Valued Contributor
+3
Account Executive
I have replaced them with other filler words.ย 
SalesVEEP
Opinionated
+3
VP of Sales
By throwing in words like "fuck" and "cunt," but really I make a tally and for every tally of filler words I take 50 cents out of my fun budget and throw it into my IRA
bareknuckles
Valued Contributor
+4
CEO of my kitchen table
Write down your pitch into a google doc and then use a chrome extension called "word tune". It rewrites your sentences to be more concise.ย 

Practice, practice, practice.

Once you have it down, try going off the cuff and giving it your own touch so as to come off more natural.
NoSuperhero
Politicker
+6
BDR
I have to say practice is the main one. I used to work on them a while ago and I have to mentally put the input again to work on them when I practice or talk. Also if you know your stuff filler words become less of thing.
Sinatetra
Good Citizen
Account Executive
I donโ€™t. I filler word that shit up. Still close a lot of uhhhhhh deals. Be you
JC10X
Politicker
+8
Senior Sales Manager
silence
2
Veteran Words of Wisdom for Newbies
Discussion
11
5
For those of you who spice it up when dialing, what is the best word you or you colleague snuck into a conversation?
Question
8
31
The twelve most terrifying words
Question
25