Tuesday, 31 October 2017

The Most Nerve-Racking Experience of the Year

The year has not ended, but I think what I went through on Saturday would be my most nerve-racking event this year. I took part in a 3-minute thesis (3MT) competition! In this competition, I had to summarise my thesis in three minutes using only one static slide. If I spoke beyond the time limit, I would be disqualified.

Screenshot from https://threeminutethesis.uq.edu.au/
My Phd supervisor had earlier written to encourage me to join, and I obediently signed up without realising it was a competition. When I found out, I was alarmed as speaking publicly was certainly not my strong suit (it is different when the audience are students)! After writing my speech, I probably rehearsed more than twenty times and my throat grew hoarse with all that practice.

Did I win? Of course not. Haha. The winners' theses were very interesting! But I would like to thank God that I could pray that He would grant me peace and help me speak fluently. I was sent the video of my presentation later and found that I was at least coherent and I really thank God for that. Also, before reporting to the lecture theatre where the competition took place, I was silently wishing I would be the second presenter so that I could see how the first presenter did and that I could relax after my turn. Thank God that I was indeed the second presenter!

I was also grateful for the support of my family. J helped to time my speeches and both children encouraged me by saying "Good job, Mama!" whenever I said a paragraph without stumbling or forgetting. Lyndon gave pointers to shorten my speech so that I would not exceed three minutes. Thank God for family! A bonus came in the form of my former boss congratulating me for doing well despite not winning. Thank God! :)

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