Public speaking is very few people’s favorite thing. It can be so terrifying to get up in front of a whole class and present your project, so here are a few tips on nailing your next speech and feeling a little less nervous while you’re at it.
i. preparing your speech
Start with a topic that you care about, and be sure that:
It’s not too general that you don’t have enough time to cover it (like ‘the history of the US’ for a five minute speech) or too specific that you will run out of material.
Some people talk faster when they are nervous, some people slow down. Find out which you are and plan accordingly.
Make several drafts, and send them to your teacher if you can.
Create your visual aids (PowerPoint, handouts, etc) before your final draft, so you can make changes as necessary.
Don’t put too much text on your slides, other wise your audience (and maybe you) will get distracted by trying to read them.
Stick to using slides for quick facts, statistics, and pictures.
Don’t use the sound effects options they have for changing slides, it will just be a distraction.
For a speech you’re just giving once, you probably won’t have the timing down enough to use automatic changes.
Don’t put too much information on one slide. Just the point you’re on, and maybe the next, will be enough to fill it if your font is as large as it should be.
Make sure you have your slides saved in at least two places (typically a flash drive and your email) so that if you can’t access one you have a back up.
Think about what questions people might have about your topic, and be prepared to answer them. Also brush up on any opposing views if the exist so that you can address those, both in the speech and in questions.
ii. making your flashcards
Write bigger and clearer than you think you need.
I find it a bit difficult to read when I get nervous, especially when I’m just glancing down quickly. Write in print, and stick to just one or two points per card so that you can write largely.
Don’t write whole sentences, just key words.
If you have too much information you’ll be tempted to read it all off. Instead, just write down a word or two that will remind you of your point if you get off track.
Number your flashcards, and consider putting them on a ring.
That way, if you drop your cards on the way up you won’t start out flustered.
Remember to put when to change the slide so you don’t forget and end up behind, or leaving it on the same slide the whole time.
Color code your cards so that you can see what’s happening at a glance.
I typically use blue for stats/things I need to quote directly, grey for slide changes, and pink for points to emphasize.
All speeches should end with you asking for questions, so be sure to add that into your last card.
Always practice out loud, even if you feel silly.
It’s important to hear and feel yourself saying the speech to get comfortable performing it.
Time yourself practicing your rough draft a few times, so you know if you need to make it longer or shorter.
Practice with your visual aids a few times
Practice it all the way through if you can; if you mess up, brush it off and keep going.
Film yourself practicing, so you can see if there’s anything you’re not noticing that you need to adjust.
Practice everyday, even if it’s just for a few minutes some days.
The more you practice, the more comfortable you’ll feel.
iv. getting ready to speak
On the day of your speech, be sure to eat a good breakfast/lunch so you don’t get light headed.
Dress in an outfit that makes you feel confident and isn’t distracting: no busy patterns, large logos, or short hemlines that you would be tugging at the whole time.
Double check that you have everything you need before you leave – cards, slides, and any handouts you may need.
This TED Talk has some great tips on faking confidence. I highly recommend watching it, but if you don’t have the time one of the take aways is that certain poses can trick your brain into feeling confident. She actually suggests going into a bathroom stall and standing in a “Superman” sorta pose for a minute or so. You’ll feel really silly, but strangely it helps.
While you’re in there, adjust your hair/check your teeth so you’re not worried about that when you get up there.
If you get to choose when you speak, think strategically: will going first and getting it out of the way make you feel better? Or would you rather wait and see a few people speak first?
I really don’t suggest waiting until the very last slot, but I like to go second or third to have the best of both worlds.
When you get to class, lay out everything you need and glance over your notes one more time. Then take a deep breath. You’ve got this.
v. the speech
When you get up to speak, take your time laying out everything you need and setting up your slides.
After you’ve gotten the slides on, test the remote to see how sensitive it is. Just flipping to the first slide and back to the intro will help you feel less flustered if it’s more sensitive than you think and jumps around.
Take a deep breath and get started. If you mess up, no will know but you. Just keep going and act confident.
Glance back for just a second when changing slides to make sure you’re on the right one.
Make eye contact! The biggest mistake I see people make is to look down or above everyone’s head. Make eye contact with everyone more or less equally so it doesn’t look like you’re staring people down (but, if there’s someone that’s extra smiley/encouraging don’t be afraid to come back to them when you get nervous).
If you feel yourself starting to get nervous or starting to talk too fast/slow, it’s okay to take a second to take a deep breath and center yourself. Don’t be afraid of a couple seconds of silence if you need them.
If the podium helps you feel less nervous, use it. If moving around helps you loosen up, that works too!
If you get off track, you are likely only one that even noticed that you messed up, so just take a deep breath, take a look at your notes, and get back on track the best you can (”going back to the second point,” or “but before we get to that,”).
If you’ve noticed that something’s wrong that needs to be addressed (like you’re on the wrong slide, or you misspoke and gave an incorrect fact) you can say something simple like “Sorry, I misspoke, it’s actually 1 in 3 Americans, not 1 in 4″ or try to make a joke if the subject lends to it and move onto your next point.
No matter what happens, it’s all good. Try to to panic and say things like “sorry, guys, I’m just so nervous” because that’s basically the only thing that will tip them off that you are.
Above all, just try to relax and remember that you’re doing a good job. No one but you can tell how nervous you are or will know if you mess up.
So according to an interview with Neil Gaiman in the back of Good Omens, before Terry Pratchett became a full time writer he wrote at least 400 words a day.
I’ve been trying it out for a couple weeks now and let me tell you 400 words is a totally awesome goal. It is very approachable and not intimidating, often leads to more than 400 words cause well now I have to finish this scene.
Seriously I probably would have written nothing in the last couple weeks, instead I’ve written 1000′s of words.
So this drabble came about because @denilmo showed me an adorable fanart of these two dorks that I couldn’t get out of my head.
Golden sunlight slowly faded into the deeper hues of night. Tenzo sighed, breathing in the heavy scent of decaying paper and dust. He flipped through the book in front of him, eyes skimming over the words. This wasn’t pertinent to what he was supposed to be researching, but the theory of expanding chakra was an interesting one. A soft chuckle pulled Tenzo’s attention from the page. He glanced over at his companion, annoyance swirling through him. Kakashi had a stack of books in front of him as well, but the familiar cover of Icha Icha leaned against their spines.
“Are you serious? You better not be reading porn when we’re supposed to be researching,” Tenzo growled under his breath.
“Maa, maa,” Kakashi soothed, eye curving into the familiar smile that his mask hid.
Tenzo was temporarily distracted by the way the moonlight caught on the silver hair. The jonin’s grin increased, shifting the fabric enough that he could see the outline of lips beneath. Despite his frustration, Tenzo imagined slipping his fingers under the annoying blue cloth and running his thumb along the soft curve of Kakashi’s smile.
“-more interesting things,” Kakashi’s voice broke through the momentary spell, startling Tenzo. Judging from the words he caught, there’d been an invitation there.
“We’re supposed to be preparing for a mission,” Tenzo reproved, turning his eyes back to the book.
Kakashi leaned closer until only a few, scant inches separated them. “We’ve done plenty of research. Besides, we could spend time studying anatomy instead.”
The playful lilt in Kakashi’s voice dragged a laugh from Tenzo. “Did you get that out of your book?” He eyed Icha Icha a second time, wondering how someone like Kakashi could lose himself in what basically amounted to smut. Surely he had higher standards than that.
Kakashi didn’t appear fazed by Tenzo’s amusement. “Our opponent is skilled in ninjutsu, correct?” The jonin waited for Tenzo’s nod before continuing. “So, we may not be able to attack with jutsu. We may have to fall back to hand to hand combat. Anatomy is important.”
Cool fingers brushed against Tenzo’s temple. “A blow here is enough to incapacitate a target.” Kakashi’s hand slid around Tenzo’s neck, pushing brown hair out of the way. Despite himself, the Anbu shivered. “Here, could drop him to his knees, or paralyze him with enough force.”
Tenzo almost argued that he knew all of this when Kakashi’s touch circled back to the front of his throat. The gap in his flak vest allowed the jonin access to Tenzo’s pulse point. He wondered if Kakashi felt the way his heart sped at the touch. “A kunai here, and he’ll bleed out within minutes. Well,” Kakashi frowned, then deft fingers rolled down the black fabric that sheathed Tenzo’s neck. The pressure increased alongside his pulse. “This is more accurate.”
“Sometimes, marks can be difficult though,” Kakashi continued as if he couldn’t hear the soft intake of Tenzo’s breath. “Not everyone will let you get close with a blade, so you have to take a different approach.”
The warmth of Kakashi’s breath teased the exposed skin. “Seduction missions are popular for a reason,” the man murmured. Tenzo jumped when another hand smoothed over his chest. At some point, Kakashi had unzipped the heavy vest encasing his upper body. Pressure on his right shoulder guided Tenzo onto his back. He went willingly.
“The closer you can physically get to your target, the better.” Kakashi continued, sliding one knee across Tenzo’s lap to straddle him. “From here, there are dozens of places you could reach to kill someone.”
Tenzo meant to argue, he really did, but Kakashi’s weight distracted him. “You have to make sure their senses are dulled by filling them with something else,” the jonin’s voice dropped softer as he leaned dangerously close to Tenzo’s ear. “You need them distracted.”
Impossibly soft lips brushed Tenzo’s ear, and his entire body jerked in response. When had Kakashi removed his mask? As the kisses moved lower, Tenzo decided he didn’t care. He lifted his arms to circle Kakashi’s back, but the other man caught his hands and pressed them against the rough, wooden floor, linking their fingers together.
Kakashi leaned in, almost close enough to kiss, and for a moment, Tenzo forgot to breathe. The mask puddled between them, revealing the devilish smirk of Kakashi’s lips and the beauty mark just to the side. Tenzo had never wanted to kiss anything so much, but Kakashi remained just out of reach. The man shifted, grabbing Tenzo’s hands in a one of his, the other coming to lightly brush Tenzo’s cheek.
The touch disappeared, and warm lips teased against Tenzo’s neck and traveled up to capture his ear lobe. He stuttered out Kakashi’s name as his body trembled with longing. Something cold pressed against Tenzo’s neck, and through the haze of desire, he recognized the frigid bite of metal.
“I just killed you,” Kakashi chuckled, pulling back. “I guess you still have a few things to learn.”
Jerking his hands free, Tenzo tugged Kakashi closer by his vest. “Teach me, then.”
hello! got a idea/suggestion for fanfic but i'm dreadful at writing (unlike you)! alternate universe malec and magnus reveals/shows/tells alec he's a warlock?!✨✨✨ don't worry if you don't want to xx
thank you :x i didnt know whether u meant any au or the season 1 au, so i improvised i hope you like it!
The rain glowed neon in the city light, pouring from the grey clouds that overtook the sky. The sound of it meeting the ground drowned out all other noise, creating isolation out of soothing chaos. Magnus couldn’t help but think of how fitting it was. That today of all days would see nature announce its sorrow.
It had been months now since that fateful party. Since Magnus had regained his magic and his heart. Since he met the boy in blue. He could still remember Alec asking him to stay, how the confidence had made Magnus hesitate until he noticed the careful urgency radiating off Alec. Therefore, body still brimming with new-found life, he had agreed, and felt his heart skip at the smile that lit up Alec’s face.
After that it had been meetings between clients, late night texts, laughter shared across food, fingers intertwined, and lips pressed to cheeks. Being with Alec was exhilarating, the energy between them palpable. Every date felt like they were caught in their own personal gravity, pulled closer and closer together with each smile.
Summer is approaching, and the students at Trost School for the Gifted and Talented are in good spirits as they eagerly await the end of their exams. But soon they’ll discover something isn’t quite right at the austere boarding school: something that Reiner and Bertholdt are trying desperately to forget.