The Waiting Game

Do you remember the final moments before you competed in an athletic event, or delivered a talk? No doubt you were anxious, thinking, “Come on. Let’s go!” As we watched the Track and Field Olympic trials, the runners loosened up before crouching in the starting blocks. It felt like an eternity before the starter said, “On your marks,” “Set,” and the gun went off. You could see the tension and focus on the runners’ faces.

The same tension was on display recently on the TV series America’s Got Talent. Numerous contestants stood on the large stage facing a sea of people, waiting for their music. Teeth were grinding and hands twitching as electrical charges surged through the performers’ bodies.

The waiting game is critical to manage when speaking, virtually or live. Clear your mind. Focus on a single intention. Breathe deeply and slowly exhale. Welcome the challenge you’re feeling and transfer it into performance energy. Step into the spotlight collected and strong.

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