Working on a father of the bride speech can most times be a real challenge. The challenge itself is not that the speech would be too complicated or too long, but it’s how to manage things properly, how to express all important ideas and how to adjust the actual length of your speaking time.
There are key elements that will help you exactly in the quest to find out what’s the best way to achieve an all-in-one solution! As you already sense, it’s also about keeping a good balance between certain duties you have. It’s the need of acceptance: you have those tasks and to-dos, whether you agree or not. So then, an obvious solution is to let them come and solve them without hesitation.
Keep calm and just write
You need a calm heart and mind, we could even say you need to completely relax in the toughest moments too. By relaxing I am not endorsing the “go with the flow” or “I don’t care, I just do what I can” attitudes! What you need to be relaxed about is the process of doing whatever it is. The same applies to writing the speech’s text.
For the father of the bride speech, just like other wedding speeches, you need a clear and well-organized structure to go with. Once you’ve got the structure, you need to progressively write more and more until it’s enough.
But hey, what is the right bride’s father speech structure? Why do people present structures and contents differently? As we all know, there are different traditions – some widely accepted, and others kept only by smaller communities. In your case, you are the only person who knows which category you fall in – the one with the nationwide, statewide, citywide or just community-wide traditions. When there’s a dilemma and people aren’t certain, they prefer to ask around and respect some traditions that are commonly known to at least 20-30 people. These practices are all fine and helpful! If you keep asking around, and ask your family members, friends, barbecue buddies – whoever you want to ask – you can easily find out what people think is a tradition for your speech, and the wedding overall.
There are certain wedding traditions too, in which they might tell you the exact order of the speeches (thus you will know in advance that you’re the 1st, 2nd or maybe just 6th person speaking. It is important to know the set of “rules” by which you will determine the order of your own speech. If you don’t know what your daughter wants, you better ask her about the father of the bride speech. She can tell you exactly what she had in mind with her husband about this aspect.
Generally, the speech comes in five parts:
- Introducing the speech
- Speaking about her
- Speaking about him
- Quoting or personal words of advice and wisdom
The above parts are all quick, sleek and simple, right? But that’s not all! We’re barely getting started. It is very important to know what you need to add to each part of the speech, so that you can make sure it’s done the right way.
Keeping calm and writing all the time means that maybe two days you have only just a few sentences or words listed on your draft speech, but then the third day you might write an entire paragraph, because you have plenty of ideas and inspiration. In any case, some days might feel like you’re moving backwards instead of moving ahead. None of these feelings is to be considered problematic! You need to keep going, to not give up and to know that baby steps will always reach to full success.
Keeping control of the “others”
Be others we mean both other situations and other people, who have nothing in common with the wedding of your daughter. In other words, you will have a lot to do with family members and also friends who have been invited to this unique event, but then you will need to keep in mind that your boss is important too, meaning that you can’t ignore your job.
I know that for some people, it’s the job that causes most stress, because you will ask yourself:
- How will I have enough time to go to work daily?
- How will I have the self-control to not offend co-workers?
- How can I explain my boss that overtime is out of the question for the coming few months?
I understand the fact that these questions always arise, but you need to know that if you can just keep calm, you will find that even what seems more “impossible” will become possible really soon. If you just take an honest hour or two to analyze aspects of your life, you will soon realize that the reason you need more free time is because you have been used to watch certain TV series, to read books, and so forth. Now, when the wedding of your daughter is approaching and you know you need to finish the father of the bride speech, you can let go of some activities. Even if you know you couldn’t let go forever, you need to be at least selfless enough to let go of those extras at least until you have the wedding day coming. Then, after you’ve been there and gave the father of the bride speech, it’s all okay to continue – unless the extra activities keep you away from your wife or other important duties of life.
Then, certain friends will need to see you every now and then. Of course, you could go ahead and explain to them how you have no free time, but that often leads to unpleasant results. What you should do instead is to keep a balance, and make sure you meet them weekly, but also progress with writing the speech. That’s one of the ways to handle things, but then there are other possibilities too.
Playing with wedding speech jokes
I will definitely recommend that you use jokes whenever possible, within the speech. Of course, you need to watch out for details, because you shouldn’t turn the speech into a joke-parade. Then, there are also certain types of jokes that can’t be considered proper for weddings. You need to read some info online, and make sure that you only choose the jokes that will be suitable for the speech.
You also need to learn how to become open-minded and flexible in timing. Maybe before the wedding day came to pass, you learned at least 100 jokes, making sure you have one in any case. However, the jokes aren’t to be told anytime and not even in pre-established moments. What works best is to observe the mood of the guests and according to their facial expressions, attitudes and behavior you will know when to tell the joke and when to speak about your daughter or other parts of the speech.
One of the general rules is this: if you notice that people are getting bored, you need to stop and be funny with a joke you invented or learned beforehand. Such jokes will not only cancel the boredom, but will also keep the guests engaged and interested.
Observe which things are of general interest
You need to be a good observer and learn which things are of interest to everyone. Once you notice something, you make use of it and start speaking more about that aspect. However, more often it happens that you notice how certain guests begin to talk to each other, losing interest and not paying attention to your words anymore.
In those situations, you need quite some creativity, because you need to improvise something new, to speak differently for the wedding speech in order to attract their attention too. This can also be done more easily if you learn to observe the guests even before you speak – in the case you aren’t selected to be the first speaker. While seeing how people react to other speakers, you will already have a general idea about what they like and what keeps them distracted. That is all valuable information, especially because you want to make an impression and you want to make sure you honor the newlyweds and the guests too.
Measure the time while you can
You already know that every wedding speech is supposed to have a certain length. Yes, these can’t be neither too short nor too long. For some people, speaking just three minutes is enough to make the best impression for the wedding. You might ask yourself why, but the answer is very simple: if you tell the essence, if people feel the message and you have charisma, you don’t even need to speak more than that.
On the other hand, a few people are so good at speaking that they can even keep guests focused for 15 minutes. Obviously, I don’t recommend such a lengthy speech – only 1 out of 100.000 speakers would achieve that, the others would cause boredom.
So, as you are at home, simulate the final speech and measure the time with a stopwatch. Then you will know how to speak the right length – between 3 and 5 minutes, maximally 6 minutes!