Naked with Black Socks: Are you comfortable in front of people, or does the idea of public speaking make you want to hide in the bathroom? Why?
I am currently less comfortable speaking in front of anyone than I have ever been in my life previously. I have always hated public speaking but in the past I have managed to do it relatively effectively. Now I struggle to make myself talk in front of family or a group of 1. That is if I could calm down enough to actually meet them in the first place! I am not at a stage where I can not make or talk myself into doing it and that adds to the stress.
I have hated public speaking … forever. I remember at intermediate throwing up prior to a speech in front of my class and then running home to completely avoid it. I could give a speech but I never achieved any level of comfort at it. I am slightly better at teaching. I did a lot of that when I was nursing and I can forget I am in front of the class. But I prefer 1:1 work, or rather, I did, now even that stresses me.
In both instances I learn my material off by heart even though I take key notes to read during the speech. I am so stressed during the actual speech that I never consult them. So the speech I give has the content but not the way I originally wrote it or rewrote or practiced it over and over. The feedback I have got is that I am an engaging speaker but talk fast! I have tried to fix that but every time I am stressed I talk fast. I even took speech classes and the same issue persisted.
I remember my thesis supervisor told me he was pleasantly surprised at my speech because it was nothing like the various copies that he had received in the lead up to the speech. For that same speech I was nauseous the entire wait for my turn to speak and was feeling like a wreck by the time my turn came. The lines on my help notes all blurred together and were no help to me at all. I had power point which I thought would distract attention from me and while it may have it didn’t help my sadly didn’t help my stress at all.
So technically I hide in the bathroom before a speech because the nausea persists and it is embarrassing to throw up over the audience! Therefore in the instance of me speaking in public – I prefer silence!!