According to the National Institute of Mental Health, 73% of people have a phobia of stage fright. I am part of that 73%. It didn’t help that in 5th grade I had to present my project about Cuba to the class. At the time, I did not know how I was going to present the assignment in front of everyone with this phobia, it was stuck in my head making me very frustrated. It felt like a mountain I could not climb but I realized that I had to face this challenge, or else I would always be afraid. Courage to me is doing something that you didn’t think was possible.
I remember I was in Ms.Fong’s 5th-grade classroom 305. Ms.Fong was in front of the class summarizing the idea of what our new project was going to be. The project was a choice between interviewing our parents when they immigrated, or background information of the country they’re from. I chose to do a presentation about Cuba, where my dad’s side is from. I was excited about the project because it was an opportunity to share more about my family’s heritage. However, I was nervous about presenting the project. I doubted that I was going to do well. My mind kept echoing “If you stutter, no one can understand you.”
While I was presenting in front of the class, my classmates and teacher were staring at me. All of their eyes were watching me like a hawk. I encouraged myself by thinking, “You can do this.” My classmates asked questions and my brain felt overwhelmed.
“Where is the country located?” someone asked curiously. “When was the country founded?” someone else asked unfamiliarly. I did know some of the questions but some I just had to say I didn’t know. I eventually just took a deep breath and attempted to relax myself. “It’s going to be fine,” I convinced myself. I showed courage while being anxious because I kept on fighting my stage fright. My friends helped me overcome my stage fright because they were supporting me.
I realized if I could answer questions, then I could present. I started presenting with more confidence. “I can do this, I can do this!” I encouraged myself and ended up helping me to not stutter. The teachers and class were impressed because they knew that I had stage fright.
I learned that sometimes you can be courageous, even if you don’t believe in yourself. I was filled with joy and was proud of my report card. If I didn’t get over that fear, I would be running away from that fear, trying to avoid presenting as much as I could. That’s not helpful for me in the future, because I would always be nervous about making speeches or talking to strangers in general. I had a good learning experience of how to get over my stage fright when I was presenting. I learned that courage comes when you’re facing something that you truly have a fear of. Courage is very important because you eventually have to get over that barrier that’s blocking your way before it gets worse for you. This can relate to people who have stage fright because this phobia is very common. Courage is doing something that surprises your belief in your own capabilities.