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Stepping into the Spotlight: My First experience as a Novice Public Speaker

Here’s how it started; with my need to be a constant centre of attention and my inability to get embarrassed. This is how I got into my favorite hobby and the thing that scares me the most to this date. I am talking about public speaking.

I spoke in front of an audience for the first time when I was in 1st grade. But all I remember of that day is my heart beating out of my chest and the applause I got from the audience later. That sound of everyone applauding and the proud smiles on the faces of my teachers is the reason I fell in love with public speaking. It's that feeling of euphoria that I get after climbing off stage that cannot be substituted by anything else.

But nobody who has ever heard me speak will tell you that I get nervous either on or off stage. I have been told multiple times that the reason people like hearing me speak is because of how confident I am on stage.

So here’s my confession: it all started with me faking that confidence. I was and still am a very socially anxious person. The crowd will always be one of my biggest fears. But despite all of that, speaking in front of that same crowd gives me that feeling of power as if I’m standing at the top of the world.

What I’m trying to convey here is that even though speaking in front of an audience can seem like something absolutely nerve-wracking, it is worth all of it. It took me years of feigning confidence before I could actually develop that sense of conviction in myself. And now I feel like the stage is my home. I will always feel the same nervousness I felt the first time I spoke in front of people, but the look on the audience’s faces when I’m done speaking will remain my reason to go through all those emotions every time.

I started when I was around 8 years old and I’m 18 now, I have done multiple events such as debates, MUNs, extempores, etc. and what I’ve deduced from these experiences is that if you speak from your heart, the audience is going to love it. Besides, public speaking not only improves your CV but is also one of the best places to build the most uncanny friendships. I’ve met some of my closest friends at public speaking events. These are the people who will always have your back no matter what.

So this is my suggestion to all of you, let go of your preconceived notion that people will make fun of you for being nervous on stage. Get on that stage and speak your mind. And hopefully, all of you will fall in love with speaking in front of the

public the same way as I did.

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