Boosting My Self Confidence

I was always very shy in public. When we had ‘show and tell’ at school, I would take the day off. I never had the guts to speak in front of people. I would never raise my hand to answer the teachers questions, nor would I take part in class activities eagerly. When the teacher would ask me questions, I would mumble an answer and blush while doing so. The whole class called me “Mum Molly,” but I didn’t mind.

Although my grades were pretty good, a came at a daggers point when I had to present my final thesis in front of the students from my semester and the whole faculty in college. I had no way out of it and I knew this time, I had to do something to conquer my anxiety of public speaking. I needed to get a good grade on my Marketing thesis presentation to get a spot on the new job Apple was offering. I know there were a lot of people applying for it. But with a good grade, my thesis could land me a spot in Apple for sure.

I ordered a self-help book online and hoped it would help me out. I also practiced in front of the mirror every day, but the thought about so many people looking at me scared the bejesus out of me. As the day of my presentation loomed in the near future, I became frantic with desperation.

With the help of a friend, I began taking classes on communication skills off campus. I shared my fears with the teacher there and she gave me some pointers, which proved to be extremely helpful in communication, no matter what your confidence level was. These were the tips I was given:

  • Stand tall and push shoulders back while talking to anyone.

  • Speak slowly to grasp the attention of your listener.

  • Use hand movements and gestures to enhance your communication level.

  • Don’t move around, save your energy for speaking.

  • Keep your eyes on the audience. Never stare down when talking to anyone.

  • Always be confident when speaking.

With a few classes, my teacher helped me communicate with others. Even if I lacked confidence, I knew I could communicate more effectively with her help.

On the day of the presentation, I kept her points in mind and stayed optimistic. My desire for scoring well on the thesis kept me motivated throughout.

And it worked. I scored an ‘A’ on my thesis! My teachers told me that it was my ease in talking and my performance’s power that made me do well. When you put your mind on accomplishing something, nothing in this world can stop you from taking it!

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