Glossophobia is the fear of public speaking or of speaking in general.The word glossophobia comes from the Greek γλῶσσα glōssa, meaning tongue, and φόβος phobos, fear or dread.
My chest contracts and seizes. My palms sweat and my armpits soak my shirt. I’ll probably find a sweat stain later. I suddenly shiver, pretending I’m cold. Really, though, it’s because I’m anticipating it.
I take a deep breath through my nose to calm my tensing muscles. It doesn’t work. I look at the ceiling. I pray. I think about other things. I think about how funny such-and-such a time was– why can’t I just chill? I know most of these people. They aren’t going to stone me.
My name is called. I stand on unsteady legs… my knees knock at every other step up to the podium. My mind goes blank. My sight blurs. I take a shaky breath and look out over the audience. They’re looking at me. Ugh! Is that my voice? I sound so husky. What was I going to say? Don’t talk too fast. I hate this. I hate this. I hate this.
If I wanted to talk to groups of people, I would have pursued a career in political science, in law, in journalism, in marketing. But I didn’t.
I chose technical writing. Because I don’t want people to look at me or listen to my voice.
I want them to read my voice.
I prefer being the hidden writer.
I prefer shirts with no sweat stains.
So just let me write.
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