As ever, you know I find it important to talk about my life experiences in a productive and meaningful manner, so that we can all learn together how to get through the challenging – and the great! – moments in life. I had an interview the other day (like a job interview) and when they asked what my blog was about I tried to explain it similarly to what I just wrote – except it was a lot less concise and far more convoluted than necessary – to be fair I was fairly nervous! 😉
Finding out what your limits are is really helpful in sorting out what your mental health triggers are, and what things you can effectively avoid doing, or how you can survive doing some things you can’t avoid, in order to not live a limited life. Unfortunately we can’t avoid every situation that challenges us, but in fact oftentimes those experiences have a very positive effect on us, and make us grow and change as a person. Honestly, public speaking is probably the one we can all relate to the most, because we all have to do it at some point, and very few of us are born being able to do it without a familiar sense of nervousness and dread. It’s funny for me, because I’m someone who loves to talk, and I’ve had plenty of experience doing so (sometimes I just won’t shut up haha!) yet just last week I had to deliver my last ever school speech (mental, I know!) and I was shaking, sweating, and had the familiar sense of dread in my stomach. Yet, because I have done it plenty of times before, I managed to stay in control, and I am pretty proud of how I delivered my speech. Maybe I was sweaty and visibly shaking, but I didn’t let it take away from my control and ability to deliver a good speech – I think my voice even sounded controlled, clear, and well-paced – something I have never found easy.
In the past week I had the aforementioned interview for a path of tertiary education I might be able to undertake next year (I won’t say too much now haha), and as ever I felt so nervous I could barely eat my breakfast. I don’t know exactly why I was so nervous, but I think a lot of it is just those fight or flight instincts, and even if you have done exams, interviews, or speeches many many times your brain will still have a go at fleeing. However, those past experiences mean that we can assure ourselves that we are not in danger, and that actually there is nothing to worry about. Once I got to the location of the interview, I was pretty calm, and focussed on being excited and just enjoying it. Whether or not I get in, I had that experience, and if I have to do it again next year (and of course there will be plenty more interviews for me to do in my life haha!) I have that experience to back me up. Plus afterwards I got to go for a walk around Christchurch City Centre to burn off my adrenalin with one of my closest friends, which was awesome 😀 (shout out to her if she’s reading this). Plus, I had the backing of all the awesome texts and hugs of support from my other friends. 🙂
The promise of a new year always evokes the knowledge that there will be new challenges to face and new adventures to undertake, which is synonymous with that feeling of discomfort and leaving your comfort zone. But we’ve done it for so many years before, we can do it again. Know your limits, know the things that trigger a deterioration in your mental health, or things that are detrimental to your mental health. Then, find those coping mechanisms, back yourself in your decisions, and train your brain that not every new experience is a reason for the flight or fight instinct.
I hope this post helped you in some way, and I would honestly love to hear about your experiences and/or advice for dealing with challenging situations. 🙂 What do you do in these moments? Have any of you managed to conquer the public speaking nerves?
Until next time,