Every week, my department holds a “whiteboard” meeting at which we give updates about our projects. During last week’s meeting, I got roped into a bit of involuntary oratory. Would I be willing to address the group next week? Oh my, yes, I felt myself nodding. “OH, NO!” screamed my brain.
Like most people, I hate public speaking. Loathe it. I’d rather get 10 big novocaine shots than have to face even a small group.
So imagine my surprise this morning when I stood in front of 60 people to deliver a little speech on communication—without throwing up or fainting.
The tips at anxietycoach.com must have helped.
So did talking about something I care about. (In this case, my former ballet teacher, Mr. Lorand Andahazy. He was a gifted communicator, so he seemed like a good choice.) I also avoided the second cup of tea this morning in hopes of preventing the jitters. And I did deep-breathing exercises as the spotlight drew near.
Even so, my preparation failed temporarily as I stood there waiting for my turn. My heart started to race. I felt short of breath and my lips started to tremble. I felt wobbly, like my legs were made of rubber.
Then the brain took over. I clenched my fists and thought, “Get a grip! It’s just a stupid speech to a bunch of your friends!” I looked out at my friends’ faces and launched into my spiel.
To my surprise, I actually enjoyed it. Maybe there’s still hope for having a brilliant career as a motivational speaker. Ha.