Do you like to speak in public? I do. It is such an adrenaline rush. I love it, but sometimes I get so nervous that I do a terrible job.
There was one time I was nearly cried at my own sob story while giving a speech in tenth grade. It was so embarrassing. And what is crazy is that I didn’t even feel sad. I wanted to grab myself by the face and yell, “Why are you crying in front of your whole class?”
Then there was the time I was in college and I had to give a speech in front of the whole student body…I still kick myself about this one.
There I was standing in the middle of the stage in what felt like a bubble. Everything was blurry. I couldn’t see anybody’s face, and I could hardly make out my own scribbled notes.
All I want to know is how public speaking impaired my vision. Not only was my vision a goner, but my hearing was as well. I couldn’t hear anything except my pounding heart.
As I stood silently, somebody took that as their cue to turn on a giant spot light. The light stung my eyes and it felt like someone was holding a flash light right in front of me. I was blinking vigorously, and I’m sure everyone thought I had a nervous twitch.
After I recovered from the spot light, I opened my mouth. Words began to fall out, but I couldn’t even recognize my own voice because I sounded like a baby mouse. I was literally squeaking!
If that wasn’t bad enough, I tried to do a hand gesture. Only my pinky moved. I felt like I was twirling batons, but no one else noticed any movement.
As I sat nearly paralyzed (all except for my pinky), I decided it was time to make eye contact with the audience. Sadly, I looked like a turtle. My eyes were bulging, and when I saw everyone all I wanted to do was hide inside of my shell. Of course I didn’t have a shell so I decided hugging myself was the next best option.
I knew it was bad and of course my mind was running wild. I contemplated running off of the stage all the while screaming at the top of my lungs, hands flailing above my head. I thought about crying, fainting, breathing into the microphone, or just standing in silence until even the person in the last row could hear my heart beating.
Instead I strangled the pulpit as if my life depended on it. I murdered my speech and the only thing I motivated the audience to do was to get me off of the stage.
So my question for you is: Do you like to speak? I’d love to hear your thoughts on public speaking.