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I have to do a short presentation at work (probably a minute) at a staff meeting about some things I'm working on. It's 2 months away and I'm already dreading it a few times a day...I can't believe that something so "easy" is causing me such great pain! This is my career so it's not like I'm just going to never see these people again after the class finishes. This is so frustrating for me. Things keep coming up that are giving me cold sweats, like spontaneous "let's go around the table and each read a paragraph"- what a great idea, I'd rather break a bone or have surgery! So I've finally realized this phobia is ruining parts of my life completely, and it's starting to leak into other parts of my "good life". I have propranolol and I've taken it just to see what happens but I'm not entirely convinced it's going to help during the big moment of truth. I'm starting to think I need to do Toastmasters, but even that is just terrifying. I feel like I'm the only one in my area code with this problem, why couldn't I have another problem that is much easier to treat? This is so tough to beat and I feel like you lose all your dignity trying to face your fears because we all know the first public speaking experience is not going to be my shining moment. I just needed a place to vent. I'm in the first stages of change, and be forewarned it's not fun!
 

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Oh I feel for you. Whenever I do public speaking I feel like I can't breathe so it screws up my speech and I'll be like gasping for breath in mid sentence so embarrassing. I am contemplating doing toastmasters. How bad can it be? We should do it. I know if I conquer public speaking it will give me loads of confidence. I always wanted to be a great orator too.
 

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ThirdEyeGrind
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I have to do a short presentation at work (probably a minute) at a staff meeting about some things I'm working on. It's 2 months away and I'm already dreading it a few times a day...I can't believe that something so "easy" is causing me such great pain! This is my career so it's not like I'm just going to never see these people again after the class finishes. This is so frustrating for me. Things keep coming up that are giving me cold sweats, like spontaneous "let's go around the table and each read a paragraph"- what a great idea, I'd rather break a bone or have surgery! So I've finally realized this phobia is ruining parts of my life completely, and it's starting to leak into other parts of my "good life". I have propranolol and I've taken it just to see what happens but I'm not entirely convinced it's going to help during the big moment of truth. I'm starting to think I need to do Toastmasters, but even that is just terrifying. I feel like I'm the only one in my area code with this problem, why couldn't I have another problem that is much easier to treat? This is so tough to beat and I feel like you lose all your dignity trying to face your fears because we all know the first public speaking experience is not going to be my shining moment. I just needed a place to vent. I'm in the first stages of change, and be forewarned it's not fun!
I'm sorry you have to deal with this, but think of it only being a minute. Atleast its not like a 15 or 20 minute presentation. If you see a psychiatrist you should ask them about taking some kind of benzo for just that day. Maybe your regular doctor could prescribe a benzo too but unlikely. Anyway, if you do end up getting a benzo for this occasion, it should help you tremendously, along with the propranolol. And if you can't get any benzos or don't want any, just practice daily in the mirror. I'm sure you could nail it if you practiced it by yourself in the mirror everyday cause its just a minute. Also, remember, everyone will be listening to you, but they're not judging you. If your quiet, they know that and will be expecting you to be somewhat quiet and if they'll more than likely be respectful. After its all over all will be better. I hope your presentation goes well.
 

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I fully agree with AprilEthereal: A benzodiazepine in combination with the beta blocker would be perfect. Tell your doctor about your major anxiety and ask for some benzo. Test it out first so you know how you react to the dose, you want to be calm, but not sedated. ;)
 
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