Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: REDUCE (11/05/15)
TITLE: Do's and Don'ts
By Sarah Fehr
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1. Wear an uncomfortable outfit. One of the best options is that commonly worn noose called a tie. Definitely avoid the dress shirts with stretchy tabs on the collar to allow you to breathe. Breathing is secondary to your goal of delivering your message. You may pass out on stage, but if your part is over, you have done your job.
2. This one goes hand-in-hand with number one. Hyperventilate mere minutes before your appearance. Since you already plan to, be sure to have a paper bag tucked into a pocket or purse for this use. You may even want to carry a card with basic instructions prepared on how to revive you. That way, you can hand it to someone before you hit the ground.
3. Write every word you want to speak on a note card. Absolutely no ad-libbing allowed! You must read verbatim from your notes, rarely or never making eye contact with the audience.
4. Repeatedly attempt to correct a speech blooper. For example, if you want to say “hypodermic needle” be sure to transpose the syllables into “hypodeemic nurdle” and repeat various times before giving up with a lame, “Sorry, I sure am having trouble talking today!”
5. Adopt an annoying habit to distract your listeners. In my experience, one of the best is rubbing or scratching a prominent facial feature, such as the hawk nose.
6. Be sure to embarrass yourself in some way, such as having a stray “nasal nugget” hanging out of your nostril, or an open gate for the “cows.” Do not, under any circumstances, allow a listener or fellow presenter to make you aware of this fact at any time before you leave the site.
With these tips to guide you, you are sure to succeed in calming your fears about public speaking! Don’t let anyone tell you it is too hard. Just remember to pick up a paper bag, note cards, and a prominent facial feature, and you are good to go! Oh, and let me know how it goes. I really get a kick out of…that is… I really enjoy hearing from my readers!
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