A few weeks ago I started teaching yoga in Spanish. EEK…
For those of you that know me well, one of my biggest fears has always been public speaking, and public speaking in another language?! You must be kidding!!
When I gave presentations at University I would completely freeze up. My heart would start beating at a million miles an hour, I would puff up like a red tomato, my voice would quiver, and I would start to hyperventilate, pretty much a full-blown panic attack. IT WAS THE WORST FEELING IN THE WORLD!!
For years I would DO MY VERY BEST to avoid speaking in front of a crowd. What if I mess up? What if I have a heart attack or throw up in front of everyone? What will people think? Will I ever live it down?
But as an Event Manager you need to know how to pitch, it’s part of the job. Every time I’d have to do a presentation, I would dread it. The more I THOUGHT about it, the more I FEARED it, the more I made every effort to AVOID it. But when you avoid your fears you just MAGNIFY them.
So how did I overcome my fear of public speaking?
Well I started by doing a course on how to do presentations. This gave me practical tools so when I started to do more and more presentations at work, hey they weren’t so bad. The key lies in PRACTICE.
But look at me now! If you’d told me a few years ago I’d be teaching yoga in front of a group of people, and also in Spanish, I would have told you to “F*** O**!!”
And hey, I still get nervous sometimes, but it passes, and I feel AWESOME afterwards because I’ve challenged myself. I’ve pushed myself outside of my comfort zone. Now it’s not about eliminating your fears, because they will always be there. It’s about ‘Feeling the fear and doing it anyway’ (an amazing book btw). THIS is how you grow.
What are your biggest fears? 😉