How To Write A 50th Birthday Speech
Do you need to write a 50th birthday speech, but don't know where to start?
To help you do your part and create an awesome birthday celebration, I've created this helpful guide with tips and tricks for writing your perfect speech. (You can also visit this page, that has pre-written speech samples.)
Writing a speech isn't as difficult as you might think. The key is to break it down into easy-to-do steps and then do first things first. So, let's do it, shall we?
First Step: Brainstorm
This is where you'll decide on the theme and direction of your speech. It's a list of ideas you can add to as you go. You'll do this brainstorming step before anything else, then plug these ideas into the rest of the steps below.
So how do you do this?
Well, you're going to write down all the important points you want to convey in this 50th birthday speech.
Ask yourself these questions and write them down. If doing this brings to mind other things, by all means, include them as well:
- Who is the speech for? (A spouse, parent, sibling, friend or other relative?)
- What style do you want to attain? (Funny, serious, inspirational, etc.)
- And how long do you want your speech to be? (Short and sweet, or more lengthy because you have a lot to say?)
- What do you know about the person? What are their notable characteristics? Do they have any charming personality quirks? High life achievements? Admirable habits?
- What is the funniest situation you've shared with that person?
- What is the most serious situation you've shared with that person?
(Also, you can list the most outrageous, touching, challenging, etc. Whatever stands out in your memories of them.)
- If you had one chance to tell this person anything, what would it be? (Because guess what? Here's your chance!)
- Write down anything else that comes to your mind.
You can make these items bullet points for now. You can flesh everything out later.
Now that you have a big list of items that is personalized to your birthday person, let's look at the next step.
The 50th Birthday Speech Structure
This part is a flash from the past, going back to school days when we, as students, had to do some writing as part of the curriculum. Hopefully you have fond memories of this from your growing-up years!
Back in those days, we students had to write essays and book reports. We didn't just blurt out our reports any old way we chose. We used a structure. That same structure can be applied to writing a speech.
Here it is. Does it ring any bells from your schoolday memories?
- Body Idea #1
- Body Idea #2
- Body Idea #3, etc. (As many or as few of these as you wish.)
Using this basic arrangement will help you know what to write. You'll plug in the ideas from your brainstorm list and simply write each section -- separately, if necessary. Then tie each section together. Plus, since your oration will be well-organized, your audience will be very impressed at your public speaking skills!
Now I'll cover some tips and tricks for each section of your 50th birthday speech.
Okay. You have some idea of messages you want to convey or things to include from the brainstorm above. They can be married together into an overall theme or simply included as a body idea item.
Here might be some examples:
- You want to honor and convey your love for that person.
- They've had a significant impact on your life and you want to thank them.
- You want to express the joy they bring so your life.
- You want to take the opportunity to give them a hard time. ;-)
- Anything else you might think of.
If this seems like Greek to you and you're still stumped, visit my speech examples page, for pre-written speeches that might get your braincells moving.
Moving on, if you completed the brainstorming step and feel okay about it, you have numerous ideas of sentiments and ideas to cover in your speech.
Beyond that, if you want to take it to the next level, here are some ideas to make your speech more interesting or even entertaining:
- Use some famous quotes, funny birthday quotes or sayings.
- Personal milestones they have achieved in their life.
- Highlight their endearing characteristics and qualities.
- Mention or focus on special goals they wish to achieve in the future.
- Touch on their hobbies and pastimes.
- What did they want to be when they grew up, and what they actually become?
- What are some special memories and experiences you've had with that person?
- What does this person mean to you?
- What historical events that happened on their birthday.
- What popular songs or movies were out the day they were born?
- Extraordinary adventures they've been on.
- The story of how you two met.
Okay, now that we've covered all of that, let's put this all together.
Writing Your 50th Birthday Speech
Here's a suggestion on how to get this masterpiece to take form:
- Write the body of your speech first. Once you have a solid body, you can complement it with the introduction and conclusion.
- After your body is ready, write the conclusion.
- And once the conclusion is completed, move on to the introduction. (Notice the intro is at the end. That is so you can get your main ideas down, then create a really nice lead-in introduction that works nicely with the body.)
But! Let's say things are just not flowing. What do you do?
- If things just aren't flowing well, write what does flow first. Just get it down on paper. Then, take the next thing that comes to mind and write that.
- There is no perfect plan for everyone, it's whatever works that matters. You're not going to be graded on this.
- If in doubt, ask a friend or loved one to read it. They can advise you on how it sounds and where might be going off track.
Once you get through your draft, make sure to:
- Read it out loud. Listen to how the words flow and if the ideas are cohesive. How does it sound?
- Have someone else read it, as I said above. What may sound good to you, might sound funny to someone else or it may sound great and you're just too close to it to tell.
Rehearse Your 50th Birthday Speech
Even if you're an expert public speaker, it never hurts to rehearse. And if you're a novice, you will especially want to practice. Why? Because practicing your speech will make you feel more relaxed and comfortable. A lot of what will make your speech a success is how you deliver it, so practice!
- Say your speech in the mirror. This gives you a chance to make sure it flows, the grammar and language are okay, and you've covered everything you wanted.
- If you can, try to recruit an audience of friends or family members to critique what you have to say.
- Incorporate any reasonable changes.
Now for some extra tips for putting the polish on your work.
- Make sure your intro is something that grabs everyone's attention.
- Small jokes, or good-natured pokes at their age may be appropriate.
- Your introduction is the first impression.
- Use a hook - something that catches attention.
- End with a thank you for having the opportunity to present your speech.
- Use a call to action - something like a toast to the guest of honor.
- Make your 50th birthday speech conclusion highly memorable.
- If applicable, introduce the next person.
Other Tips and Hints for a Winning 50th Birthday Speech
- Make your speech between 3 to 5 minutes in length.
- Must be appropriate to your audience, should their be children make sure its family friendly.
- Light hearted humor works well.
- Be sincere. Don't make stuff up that you don't truly believe, people will see through a lie - and that can ruin a party.
I hope these guidelines on how to write a 50th birthday speech make your task easier. I also hope it helps you write a memorable speech for your guest of honor. It's their big day, make their celebration great by making them feel special!
Good luck to you. I know you can do it!
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