Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Switching from Autopilot to Manual.

A pretty important detail to note about me is that I'm very shy, introverted, etc. You get the picture. As a result, public speaking has always been a terror to me. I would prepare as hard as I could, create outlines, speeches, presentations, and when I stood in front of my peers, all of my work would vanish.

It was like clockwork, I would stand up, present, and sit down. The biggest problem was that I never was really there when I was presenting, the feeling was akin to me vomiting words to the audience, the words that I had spent so much time preparing for. As a result, I wasn't really understanding what I was saying, I was just following the cadence of my speech. If you asked me about specific questions during the presentations, it would take me awhile to even find that section because I wasn't really giving information, I was giving a speech.

So you can imagine my trepidation, my fear of blanking out in public again, prior to the module 3 research proposal presentation.

However, when I began to present my section, I realized very quickly that I was ... comfortable. I wasn't spitting out words as fast as I could, I wasn't presenting directly from a speech that I had composed, I was informing the class about the proposal.

I'm still unsure about why I felt comfortable, maybe it was the welcoming atmosphere of 20.109 T/R section, maybe it was the time that I had invested in understanding the words that I was supposed to say. It might've even been the lack of notes that I brought to the front with me, because for the first speech in a very long time, I wasn't frantically panicking mentally.

I couldn't attribute this realization to anything but the 20.109 T/R class and the instructors, because even though I was shy and kept to myself, the fact that everybody was incredibly outgoing and constructive created a place that I could, for lack of a better phrase, "be myself".

Now the only thing left to do is to use this knowledge in future presentations, and hopefully I can be as relaxed as I was on 5/12 1:50 pm.

Thank you.

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