MANAGING THOSE NERVES

 

This was something different!!  In the hotel foyer I waited to be taken to the meeting room.

I was nervous.

From the moment I’d arrived my pulse rate had gone up … A LOT.  I knew that if I walked into the room like that my face would be flushed and my voice would probably quaver.  They would instantly know I was nervous.

I HAD to relax.

I tried the physical tricks.  I exhaled and lowered my centre of gravity.  My pulse rate didn’t slow.  I had to work on my mental state.
“I’m very familiar with the material,” I told myself.  “After all it is my own work.  And I believe in it.”  I recalled the advice from actors in the class that morning.
“Make sure you have fun.”
I started to make a list of the things I would enjoy.  There were quite a few.
I checked that I had a clear ‘Conversation Goal’.  It was fine.  It was simple and active. It pointed the way to the difficulty I was exploring.  I could build on that, I was sure.

Delivering the ConversationFive minutes later when Trent came to greet me I was feeling better – a more balanced mixture of excitement and anxiety.  Trent was facilitating this session – he’s very experienced.  If I could just avoid getting flustered again, I thought I might be OK.

As we walked into the meeting room I made a point of looking around and feeling good about the space.  “Yeah, this will be fine.”  I cased the room to find the best spot to set up the camera.  Then I realized I hadn’t packed the backup camera battery … but I didn’t panic.  I simply I wandered around the room looking for a power point … just in case.  Keeping busy stops me worrying about things that haven’t happened.

Once I started it was fine.  The time flew by.  I did forget to drop in “to share” – that was my planned ‘need’ for the session … oops.  But my topic was “how sharing affected the nature of a conversation”.  I was probably unconsciously aware of it anyway.

I discovered I’d made one more mistake.  When Trent said its time to wrap it up I realized that … I hadn’t planned an ending!!!  I was trying to stay cool … when Trent made me the perfect offer.  “Tell us about how a conversation ends,” he said.  That was a gift!! I breathed a sigh of relief.

It was a good end.

I was asked how I thought it went.  My answer was immediate.  By then I had been down my post-shoot checklist – I had an answer.  “It was fine,” I said.  I had …

  • Stayed on my ‘Conversation Goal’
  • I had shared my interest
  • I had listened
  • The next thing had been more important than the last
  • There certainly had been a few surprises!!!
  • And I had landed my ending.
Recording an Exercise

Recording an Exercise

 

WHAT DID I LEARN?                   It reminded me that I can never predict when nerves will set in.  I just have to work at managing them when they do and make sure that I have a workable process in place.  That is crucial.  Making sure I actually implement that process is the next important step. Then listen and trust your colleagues.  They’ll be keen to help.  That is the way to work towards a performance outcome that delivers the goods.  Worrying about it achieves nothing.

I don’t have experiences like that very often.  But in the end I’d found it very useful.  It was much like being an actor.

 

 

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