I am a lawyer. Inherent in what I do, is speak.
I speak to clients, opposing counsel, mentors, organizations, supervisors, squirrels [if there is a particularly compelling reason to do so]
I also speak publicly, complete with power point presentations, laser pointy things, and fancy schmancy suits [I’m a public interest attorney so a suit simply by being a suit is fancy schmancy]. I’ve spoken to crowds as small as 10 and larger than 100. Not once, not twice but numerous times.
Then why is it that each time I feel like a cat forced to take swimming lessons? I thought it would get easier once I’d done it a few times, and while I no longer fear that I will recite the alphabet and then flee off the stage in tears, the anxiety and nerves remain.
But even actors get stage fright when speaking in front of audiences. These are folks followed by paparazzi, who act for a living but put them in front of a live audience and they freak out. And considering that public speaking ranks as one of the most frightening prospects of all to most people, surpassing even death, I have company.
Tonight I am speaking to a large group of important people who I very much want to walk away from my speech thinking “wow she’s divine, just divine” and not “Stan- can we hand check her bar exam results? I’m doubtful”
I hope it goes well. I hope I do fine. But one thing I’ve learned is just because you’ve been there and done that, it doesnt make it much easier. *Gulp*
***Update: I went. I stood. I spoke. and it went REALLY well alhamdullilah. I shall now proceed to collapse at the nearest couch. Thank you.