public speaking?? thoughts? advice? reaffirmations? - Social Anxiety Forum
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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 11-07-2019, 09:29 PM Thread Starter
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public speaking?? thoughts? advice? reaffirmations?

I'm supposed to take a public speaking class next semester and I'm already so anxious just thinking about it. I told my disability center adviser about it but she hasn't responded yet. I think it might be possible to substitute the course for a different communications course but I don't know if that's a good idea plus it's a long tedious process. If I do take it, I'm hoping to figure out some sort of plan with my teacher and adviser to make the class more manageable. I feel like I should take it so i can work on my public speaking. but i also feel like the class is just gonna be cruel and unusual punishment. and i don't want it to hurt my gpa!

I told my friend this and she was like "you can't just take the class?" and i said no and she asked why not and i said "because i have social anxiety lol" like i'd literally just fail if i tried to take it without any support and she said "isn't that kinda the point?" Like no???? right?? i dont think public speaking classes are made to cure people with social anxiety like maybe it'll help people be less nervous about public speaking but it's also gonna be grading us on our public speaking and i'm gonna be at a major disadvantage

I kinda regret mentioning it to her now i feel so invalidated UGH i thought she'd be more understanding but i feel like she thinks ~everybody gets nervous sometimes with public speaking or social situations~ but i'm not everybody my brain is literally sick and diagnosed and this is a serious issue with a huge impact on my life and she's acting like im just being dramatic and should "just take the class" like everybody else

idk what should i do about this class and is it gonna help me or just stress me out and like am i thinking clearly? is my friend right that im just being extra?
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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 11-07-2019, 09:30 PM Thread Starter
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also for reference, my major is human development and family science, i wanna go into social services probably working with women and children possibly at a homeless shelter or a juvy center or something with foster kids. so it's not like i'm gonna be making speeches all the time!
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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 11-08-2019, 10:47 AM
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Originally Posted by mariaaa View Post
is my friend right that im just being extra?
Well, that's sort of the difference between normal anxiety ("everybody gets nervous") and an anxiety disorder. You know you should 'just take the class', because it's in your best interest to do so, but despite knowing that, you can't seem to force yourself to do it. You get diagnosed with SAD when your anxiety causes you to act in ways that are damaging to your well-being.

A normal person may be anxious about taking the class, but at the end of the day they want the credit more than they want to avoid taking the class. A SAD person may want the credit, but at the end of the day, they want to avoid the class more than they want the credit, even though not taking the class might have terrible drawbacks.

Therapists are there to provide additional support for a person with SAD so they can do things that other people can do without that support. (That's how it's supposed to work, anyway.)

Edit: Fun fact, I won an award for public speaking when I was younger. And I was a drama nerd in hs. I performed in front of the school a bunch of times. I was never really that nervous about it. But my anxiety didn't start until toward the end of hs. I'm not a lifer like most of the people here.

I don't really have any advice, because if forum advice worked, I'd have a job already instead of worrying about being homeless.

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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 11-08-2019, 11:51 AM
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I think your friend just doesn't understand how crippling social anxiety can be. It seems like you are too nervous about the class. Maybe you can take it when you feel better. For me I can hardly talk to anyone so that would be very hard for me. I'm sorry I don't have very good advice.
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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 11-22-2019, 01:07 PM
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I have the same issue but i'm working on it. Next week im going to some workshops for public speaking. And next year (2020.) i want to try toastmasters club.

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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 11-22-2019, 01:23 PM
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Btw i was terrible in my presentations in collage. But it's all about practice. It Will be better in time i see that on myself but i go and do that presentations even if im shaking, blushing etc. Once I have almost zero symptoms, i get grade A for my presentation and everyone told me it was interesting. I was so chill that time because i dont let bad thoughts to overwhelm me. Remind yourself that you just practice for your better future one day. Sorry for my bad english, it's not my native.

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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 11-22-2019, 03:06 PM
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This is so relatable! Public speaking is my worst fear.. and as a student I did avoid every single time I had to do a presentation. I only did group presentations.. cause the focus wasn't on only yourself. I do admit that it get's better when you try it (even if you fail, you will learn and improve no matter what). The worst thing is starting.. cause at the start you will make the biggest mistakes, but after a few times it will get better... but I understand where you come from and why you would not want to take class. Public speaking is a serious problem amongst many students.. but the WORST when you have SA like you and me... Try to practise at home by recording yourself (it helped me alot). And start small.. at least consider the class, but if you feel like you can't do it.. just Don't. It's not like you can't live without those skills.
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