Thursday, April 23, 2009

Rattling Nerves

Today I have to make a presentation. I am scared shitless. I have no positive memories to draw from when I think about all the other times I have spoken to an audience. None. The first time I spoke, I spotted a familiar face in the crowd smiling at me and then I started smiling which then led to giggling and then full on laughter. Tears followed. This is not funny.
The second time I spoke, I was better, but the questions that followed the presentation got me flustered (how many times do I have to answer the same question before you stop rewording it?). It didn't help that it was a group project and I did like, 90% of the answering while everyone just stood there, watching me get ridiculed.
The third time I spoke (yes there was a third, there is always a third), I was so nervous that I spoke too slowly and time would run out (as it did some of my peers before me), that I spoke so quickly, I'm sure no one understood a word I said. I finished three minutes early and got penalized for it.
There are so many websites offering a wide range of tips to help calm a person making a speech. I read them all. They do not work for me. No matter how many deep breaths I take, if I'm going to freak out, I will.
So I'm avoiding everyone I know like the plague because if another person comes up to me to ask if I'm ready, I might start freaking out again. I just hope that I don't giggle. Gah, I'm so nervous.

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