Have you ever been in an open Q&A in a certain event full of people, where the host says, now please make sure you make your questions handing over the microphone…
What happen in that time, normally?!…Silence, right?
I am being reflecting on this, and I got the conclusion that what I feel is shame if it is a bad question and the fear of judgement!
I am trying to beat this feeling, to free up myself as I normally want to ask something, but then I get so nrevous and I think :”Damn, this is not so important…why am I putting myself in this situation”, then I give up!
When I comment to people about this, normally I got the comment back! “Girl just ask! What are you waiting for?”…
Hmmm, it doesn’t help! And now that I am attending to events, to some authors and speakers that I really like, I am trying to reflect on this topic as I want to interact more and take advantage my time attending these events.
- Microphone, I freeze, and I am an extrovert! But the microphone effect is well known. So what I do is to ignore the microphone and use it with confidence! (kind of…) “Don’t drop the mic!…the mic is yours now!” Feels good if you think like that!
- Standing…uff, need to stand?! Why? Ok…again, just make sure you have your button shirt tied and again “the world is yours!” Just saying that I am stating this sentences inpsired in a book from Amy Cuddy, Presence! It really helps to get confidence in these situations.
- Status. If the person I am making the question, is higher than me, like the CEO of my company in townhalls, or the speaker very popular that I follow are the ones presenting and making the Q&A, I also freeze. Here the status is the reason, I am feeling blocked, I am feeling I am not in their level! The goal of the question is not anymore the content of the question but the desire to impress and be noticed! So after being thinking…I need to focus in the question, and really what I can get out of the answer. This helps…focus in the it rather than the person.
- Be prepared…going to an event needs to make sense to me, I can’t only expect I am attending to receive, and take whatever I am listening! NO…be prepared really help to be in the context beforehand and the questions naturally will come, as the curiosity will grow.
What could help in all these situations, and what I am thinking when I am going to be a speaker is: there are no bad or good questions! I know the hosts have good intentions to be inclusive, and after coming the first one, the first comment they have is “That is a really good question!”…Stop saying that! If it is to be inclusive use other way, and if it is to gain time to think also get another comment instead!
Lesson learned: Challenge yourself in the environment and try to be the first one making the question… don’t overthink, just do it…you will feel much better!