Growing up, I was shy and quiet. Naturally, I steered clear of any form of public speaking at school. Assembly, Extempore, Debate – they all gave me panic attacks and I somehow could not understand why some of my classmates were always so excited about these activities.
I succeeded until I reached 8th standard. It was now mandatory for everyone in the class to participate in Elocution every Monday.
I despaired over it through out the week and hoped the weekend would never arrive.
Inevitably, Monday came along and so did Elocution time. I was hoping my turn would never come but it did. I could feel the gazes of my class on me as I walked nervously to the front of the class. I turned towards them, but can’t remember if I looked at them. The first line was easy but I had my doubts on if I would be able to remember the entire stanza. I meekly recited my elocution. I wasn’t worried about how I performed as long as I didn’t forget a line or stuttered. I didn’t.
I went back to my seat with relief and a smile which perhaps wasn’t very visible to others. My freezing hands and feet started feeling warmer. Before my turn, I was barely listening to anyone else, now, I could hear my classmates lot clearly. I quite enjoyed it.
This was the first day I spoke in public but was definitely not going to be the last day.
As the year passed by, I started seeing what my teacher was doing. She coaxed us sometimes, other times, she forced us but eventually by mid year, everyone was out of their shells and more confident of public speaking. It would, of course, take us time to improve but thrown into a situation, we knew how to swim our way back to the shore.
Looking back, there are 6 things that my teacher did.
We always come across our ‘Coach Carter’ at least once and, for some lucky ones, more than once, but are you willing to be someone’s Coach Carter and create a memorable experience for them while you coach them?
Want to know more about how you can coach better? Reach out to us and we will be happy to guide you through your journey.
Author: Sumitra Paul Chatterjee
I Train Consultants India Pvt. Ltd.
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