Writing Prompt: Are you comfortable in front of people, or does the idea of public speaking make you want to hide in the bathroom? Why?
So strange that this prompt popped up because just last night I was listening to this podcast about glossophobia. This is a major fear that I have and I’m happy that I’m not alone; not only does this top the list of common phobia and 75% of people say they have it. I remember when I was younger I would feel sick to my stomach when I had to go anything in front of people, even walking up to the chalk board or raising my hand up to answer a question filled up with dread… pretty much all the way into high school During college, I have a report in front of the class, and after it was done, I prompt left the class to go puke in the bathroom….. the fear was REAL.
During grad school it was bad, but I figured my way around it, for example my final thesis had a presentation portion to it, but since I was doing it with 3 other people I made a point in the very beginning to tell my partners that I would not be doing the final presentation, I was more than happy to double up on the research and the interviews, but I would not be speaking to a large crowd; in the end I rationalized it saying having four people speak would be confusing to the audience…. was it true or not? Probably not, I do remember my professor asking why only one of us was presenting….
When I was graduate school, I seriously thought about joining Toastmasters International to help me get over my fear, I figured if I learned some basic techniques it would be beneficial to me in both my business and public lives; but I freaked out and didn’t join, I figured I was dealing with enough stress and anxiety why add more.
As I’m moving along my 30’s I’m getting better at it…. I’ve gotten more social, expanded my horizons, known real fear, and avoid public speaking at all costs…. as I write this I realized that I’m just dogged another speaking indecent. In October my grandmother passed away, my cousin who was supposed to read the obituary wasn’t able to attend the service because of a flight delay, So I was asked to do it…. At first I said, “no, I can’t do it….”, the I thought, “It’s your grandmother, read it!”, then I panicked, “You’re gonna embarrass yourself BIG TIME” in the end another cousin read it…. and it was fine….
So here’s the thing, how am I totally okay, with standing in front of a crowd of people and telling them what to do? But I can’t read a speech in front of them? Maybe because the first instance I have some authoritative function (and I have the control), while the other on is more submissive (where I feel like I have no control) , this is something that I’m gonna have to look into ( cause I think I just seriously psychoanalyzed myself).
In the meantime, I will continue avoiding public speaking like I avoid my ex’s (I see them and turn the other way) and you will defiantly not find me naked with black socks…
Until Next Time,