There are few times that I get nervous before a presentation but today is one of those days. It's been a while since I've given a presentation and any time there has been a time lapse between presentations I always get nervous due to several reasons.
The first is that I forget, well, I forget that I'm a public speaker. Even though I'm closing out my fifth year doing this it still seems foreign to me. I'm shy, I'm quiet, and I'll do anything to avoid a social encounter and yet I have the ability to stand in front of hundreds, and sometimes a thousand, of people and speak. Is this real? It often seems false and when I've had a presentation break I forget that I am capable.
Secondly is that I worry that I'll forget my presentation. I worry about this each time but each time it's like the overused but perfectly appropriate line of, "it's like riding a bicycle." It truly is because about three seconds into my presentation I go into my presenter trance mode and the conscious effort to present goes away and I'm on autopilot of sorts.
The third, and last thing that makes me nervous after a break, is excitement. I truly enjoy every second I am in front of a group and it makes the time just crawl to the scheduled start time of a presentation. That's how I feel right now as I wait, and wait, and wait. This leads me to start thinking about the first and second thing I mentioned in this blog and then I get excited, then I doubt myself once more and this cycle will keep going until I stand, with confidence, in front of the group I'll be presenting to and proudly say, "Hello, I'm Aaron Likens, Autism Ambassador for Easter Seals Midwest and author..." Oh! I can't wait!