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Using Virtual Space

Virtual space lets you connect the audience to invisible objects. In essence, you use virtual space to show the audience how you visualize the concepts you’re explaining. Although you see the concepts in your mind, the audience has no idea how to distinguish among them. Virtual space helps.

For example, let’s say you mention to the group that three separate departments will be involved in a decision: marketing, sales, and finance. To get the audience to see the three different departments using virtual space, you physically place the departments in the air for the audience to reference.

As you say the word “marketing”, your right hand places the word in the air to your right. As you say “sales”, your left hand places the word in the air to your left. As you say “finance,” you might use both hands to place the word in the air in front of you (below your face), as if cupping the word. The three departments are now floating in virtual space and you can immediately reference any of the three by physically retrieving it from its floating position.

Until you move your body, the audience will remember where you placed these references because the points of reference have been established. The concepts are floating in virtual space for the audience to “see” and they are easier for you to reference, as well.

You must be consistent and remember where you “placed” a reference. If you placed “sales” on your left, you cannot gesture to that virtual space and then say the word “marketing” because the audience will be confused, thinking that the space to your left temporarily refers to “sales”.

Similarly, multiple gestures to the same virtual space using different references will make the references seem equal, even though you intended them to be different. Thus, by saying the words “sales”, “marketing”, and “finance” while moving only one hand into the same place several times, will suggest the three words are all the same, because they will appear to occupy the same virtual space.

Once you move your body to another physical location, even a step or two away, the virtual space falls to the floor, allowing you to use new space to reference new objects.

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