Time to reflect on yesterday’s presentation….
Something interesting happened during my presentation, which tells me a lot about myself. Even though I was well prepared and put a lot of effort into making drawings for my presentation as well as stating clear goals and a clear key message of my presentation, even though I was not nervous three days ahead, I still felt extremely uncomfortable.
And the reason was very simple. One person (one of my colleagues, actually), sitting right in front of me, was talking to the people next to him, and making fun of me and my gestures during my presentation. This made me feel so uncomfortable, insecure, nervous, distracted and during the questions, I was doubting myself. Just because I felt the negative attitude of one person making me very clear that my work is not good.
I’ve been having this problem before, as a musician. Last year, I sang at a concert in our department during the lunch break. The negative attitude of some of my coworkers (music is not science therefore irrelevant and ridiculous) made me feel very nervous, and I performed very badly. I couldn’t even have my breathing correctly supporting my singing.
Another example is almost 10 years ago, but I never forgot it because it was a very negative experience for me. I was playing cello then as a soloist on the concert of the winners of the city medal for music. Right in front of the stage, our mayor fell asleep while I was putting my heart into my Bach cello suite. It disturbed me so much, I ended up playing not well at all.
The lesson I learn from this is that I am very vulnerable to the atmosphere in which I perform or present. If one person can make the atmosphere turn hostile against me, I am lost.
Up to now, I don’t know how to shield myself against these influences. I should just ignore it, but I’m an HSP, so sensing my environment is my natural behavior.
How can you ignore someone’s hostile attitude while you are presenting?