I hate attention,any sort of attention - from people wishing me on my bday to speaking in front of an audience.I never knew speaking in front of people would be so difficult until i went through the experience.
It all started on Teachers' day celebrations in school.I was in 6th standard and had to give a speech in Hindi in front of our whole school strength(around 2500+ students).Obviously there was a selection round for selecting the right student to give the speech among class 6 students and i don't remember how i got selected.I prepared really hard for it - At home,my bed was the stage and my mom n siss were the audience and I did pretty well in front of them :P.I was really looking forward to the D-day but at the same time was little nervous.The day came,i dressed up in a cute blue frock and was ready to give a wonderful speech.They announced my name on the mike and i walked to the center of the stage-my legs shivering.I was supposed to recite the speech but the moment i saw the huge crowd waiting for me to speak and leave the stage asap,my mind went blank- i couldn't remember a thing.And u know how school children are-they hate listening to speeches..only dance performances are enjoyed..it was the same with me but now i was at the receiving end.I was all the more nervous because of the lovely,encouraging audience.Luckily i had the speech written on a paper and what i did was simple- read the whole thing from the paper and left the stage asap.Clearly, i had disappointed my teacher ( one of my favs :( ).But things could've been worse if i didn't have that paper that time.At least i gave the speech (rather read it) and it wasn't that bad.
I was determined to get over this stage fright.I took part in an elocution competition which was again in hindi with topic -'MAA'.It was a low key competition.My mother had written the matter,which i recited along with a poem which my mom had written for her mom.It was a beautiful poem and i think that was the reason i actually won the competition.Again,it wasn't easy to speak in front of ppl,but the whole time that i was speaking,i didn't look at even a single person.It wasn't the right thing to do but it was ok(i was 11 then).This competition surely boosted my confidence.
Since then,i have had many number of opportunities to speak on stage but even now going on stage freaks me out.Sometimes its hard to believe that i spoke so many times on stage as a member of NGC,played the main role in a drama(on the occasion of 125 yrs celebrations of our school) and that i was able to influence my fellow high-school mates through my speech and become the Vice Head Girl of school!
Even in Engnn college,there was this public speaking thing in 1-1 which surely freaked out many of my classmates including me.I mean,after 2 yrs of mental torture in intermediate clg,we had an opportunity to speak in public on a given topic..but things went well.Then there was this EMTL seminar in 2-2(my luck was really bad that day...got a golden opportunity of giving a seminar on PDC too).Seriously,speaking on a topic is one thing..but Teaching - that was really something! I gave it my best shot and i guess my classmates understood what i was doing there!
Even after having a good amount of experience in public-speaking,whenever i'm on-stage i get butterflies in my stomach...Hopefully things will always fall into the right place as they have till now..:)