In talks long and short, large and small I force myself to pause purposefully and just, just look into peoples eyes and allow them to emote back, for them to nod slowly and convey to me that they understand, to allow them (and myself) to catch a breath… and another…and another. However, That space between people where silence exists is terrifying. I know my ideas are sinking in them still, I feel I’m am sinking in the silence.
And, I run my mouth to fill the time with whatever I can, earlier it was a series of ahh, err, uhm and now I’ve learnt to cover it up with jargons, globe talk or anything that will lead to nowhere in particular.
Pausing as you practice in private is easy, pausing as you are speaking in public is a little bit like letting go your next few words, sucking all the air in the room and wishing that your version of hell won’t break loose.
To pause takes guts, grounding and self-love. I still tap my collarbone and affirm repeatedly ‘All is well!’ as I prepare.
When in public, The only way forward is to trust the audiences’ generosity.