Project purpose and Objectives
The purpose of my project was to improve my personal public speaking experience. Public speaking has always been pretty difficult for me and I have never enjoyed it. When I had to give a talk or presentation, I would panic and have a miserable time. This feeling is something that I have always disliked about myself and have wanted to change for years. So, the objective of this project was to feel confident, safe, and secure the next time I stood up on a stage to speak.
My project was interviewing people in my life as well as strangers on how they personally prepare for speeches. I asked ten different people different questions ranging from how do they feel about public speaking to how do they compose themselves when they are nervous or how do they arrange their speeches.
All throughout this project experience, I had an incredible mentor who gave me amazing ideas for questions and how to improve my website. Each time I had an interview, I posted it on an Instagram page for everyone to see. Click here to see those posts.
Challenges I Faced
One of the biggest challenges I faced was having to take myself out of my comfort zone. Unfortunately, anxiety is a huge part of my life and having to public speak by interviewing people about public speaking, was a little nerve-racking. Luckily, I managed to push through and had a lot of fun.
Another challenge I faced was being able to practice what I learned. I had some incredible outcomes during my interviews and learned a lot of different tips, but I don’t public speak with assigned topics too often. I was able to go onto different websites and apps and practice, but that is not the same thing. Although, it did help me a lot and gave me an idea of how I would feel before and after using that specific tip while speaking.
When I first started this project, I actually really struggled on what I wanted to do. I knew I wanted to involve public speaking, but I didn’t know in what way I wanted to incorporate it. After about a week of discussing different ideas with my mentor, we decided interviewing people would be the most effective.
Being able to talk to people face to face and over the phone helped me to practice the tips I had gotten from other people in my other interviews. I began to get a little too comfortable doing this and it almost became a routine of interview someone and post. I realized I was not getting the most out of this project like I wanted so, I started going on different websites and apps to practice public speaking. At one point, I had one of my friends give me a topic and I made her listen to an impromptu speech.
I continued practicing and working hard to get the most out of what I had been doing and I know it has paid off. I am thrilled with the results of this project and I know it was beneficial for my future.
Overview of my Experience
At the beginning, all I could really think about was how nervous I was at the fact I would actually have to do this project. I’m pleasantly surprised with the actual outcome of how I feel now that I am done. I had a lot of fun interviewing my friends, family, and even some strangers! I was able to make new friends through this project that I was originally petrified to even start. Even though this project wasn’t easy and was not always the best time, I did have an incredible experience and know that I will use the information I learned all throughout my life.
My Insights and Takeaways
My three biggest takeaways from this assignment are go out of your comfort zone, don’t be afraid to ask for help, and keep working forward. From going out of my comfort zone I made new friends and gained new insights on how to public speak. With asking for help, I was able to update and improve my Instagram account with my mentor’s help. Finally, there were a few times I debated doing another project or felt like I couldn’t become a better speaker because of my anxiety, but when I pushed myself to keep working forward I learned so many new tips to managing my anxiety while speaking.
Brief Overview Video of Project: