Introverts, Overcome Your Fear of Public Speaking!

Ask most introverts if they love the experience of public speaking, and the answer will most likely be no.

Public speaking is a vital skill for all professionals to master, regardless of their temperament. Even after learning how to speak in public and reading numerous tips and tricks to do it well, you might still be feeling nervous. Consider devoting some time to quieting your introverted anxiety, as well as to developing your speaking skills.

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1. Change How You Think about Public Speaking

For this step, use your ability to think about what other people are thinking (which is something intuitive introverts are usually very good at). With very few exceptions, audience members typically want the person who is speaking to them to succeed. They want to see an interesting or helpful presentation, and they hope you can provide one. This means they are cheering for you. They WANT you to do well because that means the encounter will be enjoyable for them too. In a way, you are simply helping people by sharing what you know or are there to present.

Once you realize your presentation has much more to do with your audience than it has to do with you, you may feel less pressure. Use your imagination (something else that introverts are typically very good at) to think about what your audience wants to learn from you. If you’re not entirely sure, either reach out to people you know you’ll be speaking to, or consult with whoever has asked you to speak. Are you there to impart technical knowledge? Are you there to inspire or entertain people? What one point do you want to make? Write it down, and start from there.


Public speaking-Les Elfes camps

 

2. Plan, Practice, and Plan Some More

Sometimes the only way to quiet anxiety about public speaking is to get yourself to a point where you say, “I have prepared for this as carefully as I can. There is nothing further I can do.”

Write down your one-sentence goal for your presentation. Then map out what you want to say and when, either by writing it out, making an outline or just getting some bullet points on a notecard. Think about some exciting or intriguing ways to introduce your subject in the beginning, and re-state your goal in a conclusion.

Then, practice it. Go in a room by yourself, stand in front of a mirror, and talk to yourself like you are your audience. Practice it a lot. Try lots of different things. Change the order of your speech. Think about ways to use visual aids or illustrate the training you’re providing. Look at your hand gestures and facial expressions in the mirror.

When you’re sick to death of the whole topic and yourself, and you can’t practice it one more time…practice it one more time.

And then STOP. When you start to feel nervous, tell yourself that you have prepared even more than you probably needed to. You are ready.

3. Mingle Before the Big Event

This one is counterintuitive because if there is one thing introverts tend to hate more than public speaking, it is “mingling.”

Get to where you will be speaking or presenting early. This will help calm your nerves because it will leave you sufficient time to get ready and also check any equipment or software you might be using.

It will also put you in the place where your audience will be. As your audience members join you, greet them pleasantly. If you’re already acquainted, chat. If you’re not, introduce yourself and ask them how they’re doing and what they look forward to learning. Distribute any materials while people enter, or circulate to talk to them and give them any handouts.

This serves two purposes: it gives you something to do before your speech rather than be nervous, and it is another way to get the audience on your side. They always wanted you to do well, but now they want you to do well because they feel like they know you.

Public speaking-get prepared

Always Be Yourself

These are just ideas to get you started. The most important thing about speaking is that you show your audience your true self. Do not adapt things that you think make public speeches “good.” Don’t tell jokes unless you typically tell jokes. Don’t mingle ahead of time if you’d rather meditate quietly for a few moments before you start. Understand what puts you at ease and go for it.

Introverts tend to be empathetic and imaginative people. You have nothing to fear from your audience, especially if you focus on how you can make the experience a positive one for all of you.

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How to stop procrastinating right now

Procrastination is the productivity killer affecting up to 70% of college students, and according to research by Dr. Joseph Ferrari, 1 in 5 of adults. It’s far easier to concentrate on reorganizing bookshelves or scrolling through social media than tackling an essay or masses of coursework.

Statistics show that the number of people who confess to procrastinating has increased by 200% since the 1980s. A huge reason for this is technological advances, giving us access to unlimited distractions at our fingertips on the internet or our phones.

But when a deadline is fast approaching, not only does procrastination cause stress and anxiety, but it also means you might rush and not turn in your best work. If you’re reading this because you just can’t concentrate on the task at hand, you’re in the right place. In just two minutes, read these three techniques you can use right now to get your work started!

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Put your phone away

Or better, switch it off. Mobile phones constantly demand our attention; message groups constantly pinging, game notifications with updates or special offers, or social media updates begging you to scroll through your feed. If you’re simply not comfortable switching it off, turn off notifications for everything you don’t need immediate access to, or switch to ‘Do Not Disturb’ mode. Right now, you have more important things to do!

 

How to stop procrastinating right now - Turn off notifications

 

Make a checklist can help you get organized

Our brains do not enjoy taking on large and lengthy tasks. They prefer smaller, more specific goals, according to Edwin Locke’s goal-setting theory. Make a checklist of all the specific elements or paragraphs you will need to complete – if you’re concentrating on one smaller, more attainable goal, your brain is much less likely to go into panic mode and find something easier to do. For example, instead of ‘complete my essay’, break this up into: ‘Write the introduction’, ‘Write paragraph one’. etc. Making this a physical list that you can check off as you go will not only keep you on track but give your brain a reward for each section completed and keep you motivated.

Stop procrastinating, take Regular breaks

This might initially sound counterproductive, but allowing yourself regular breaks gives you a reward to work for. Set yourself a timer and work solidly for 20 minutes, then take a timed five-minute break. Rinse and repeat until you’ve achieved your goal! The five minutes works as the reward, but a break also allows you to re-focus for the next 20 minutes. You might want to adjust the timings; maybe you would work better with shorter but more frequent breaks – it’s all about what works for you. If you don’t trust yourself using your phone as a timer, you can use a clock or an egg timer from the kitchen, or ask a friend or family member to time for you.

 

How to stop procrastinating right now - Clock

 

Conclusion

Procrastination affects most of us, usually at the worst possible time. Overcoming procrastination will get you most of the way, and the rest is simple. Put on your best motivational playlist, make yourself a tea, get your head down and try these techniques right now, and knock this essay out of the park!can

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Five Simple Ways to Learn a New Language Fast

Are you interested in learning a new language but have no clue where to start? Don’t worry, there are several tools and techniques you can use to help you along the way. Whether you want to be able to speak to locals while you travel or converse with a fluent family member, these simple tips will help you learn quickly and retain every word.

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At Les Elfes we propose language courses in French, German, Spanish and English. 

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1. Watch foreign movies with English subtitles

Watching a foreign movie of your favorite genre is not only an entertaining way to get familiar with the language you’re learning, it also allows you to hear the way it sounds in natural conversation. You’ll remain engaged while mastering pronunciation as well as emotional expression, ensuring you get the proper meaning across every time. Think of your movie marathon as a study session: you can make notes and pause or rewind as you please to jot down words you find challenging. At the beginning of your language journey, you can start by following along with the English subtitles turned on. Later on, try challenging yourself by turning them off once you think you’ve become fluent enough to understand the movie on your own. 

2. Use the “chunking” method

“Chunking” is a well-known memorization technique in the field of psychology, and it can be an especially useful tool to use while learning a new language. It involves separating the words you want to memorize into groups (or “chunks”) based on the category they fall under. For example, if you are learning Italian, you can file pane (bread) and aglio (garlic) under the “food” category. Every time you learn a new word or phrase, add it to the right category. You’ll find it easier to recall words if you refer back to a “chunk” that has a specific meaning instead of attempting to memorize each word separately.

3. Focus on speaking rather than writing 

 

Many language courses put too much emphasis on mastering grammar or spelling, and not enough emphasis on oral skills. Instead of putting all your efforts into achieving flawless writing skills, practice pronunciation first. Speaking is generally more important than writing since it will most likely be your primary form of communication during your travels. Also, you can easily sharpen your spelling and grammar skills as you practice speaking out loud by using cue cards and reading every phrase or word you see out loud.

 

Les Elfes Winter camps - Conversational languages

 

4. Start with the most common words first

To avoid becoming overwhelmed with a never-ending list of new words, start by prioritizing your vocabulary. Consider which English words you use the most in your day-to-day life. Which words are the most practical, and which phrases will you use the most while traveling? Greetings, food names, and essential guiding questions (such as “where is the closest train station?”) are good places to start. 

5. Find the right learning tool

There are countless apps, books, websites, and courses that claim to be able to teach you a new language in the quickest and most efficient way possible. Choose the one that you feel would work best for you: if you have a busy schedule, you may wish to consider downloading a free app that sends you daily reminders. If you are going on a last-minute trip and need to learn a lot in a short amount of time, you could invest in an intensive two-week course that is taught in person. Weigh your options and see what would be the most effective and affordable to you. 

 

Les Elfes winter camps - App to learn a language

 

Conclusion

In addition to these practical tips, it’s important to stay motivated and remember why you wanted to learn a new language in the first place! Experiment with different learning techniques and use the ones you find most enjoyable. You will likely run into challenges along the way, but gaining a new lifelong skill will make it all worth it in the end.

What better way to learn a new language than be fully immersed in a Foreign Country?

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Tips to Promote and Maintain a Motivational Classroom Environment

As one of the most important professions, teaching is both a privilege and a valuable experience. While schools are expanding their educational programs with new technology, the primary engine of learning still resides in the classroom. The quality of teaching can make a difference in how you prepare students for their future careers. This is why promoting and creating an inspirational classroom environment is valuable to both your teaching experience and student development. With these considerations, here are applications you can use to make your classroom a more motivating place for students to learn and grow.

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Remember Names

One of the most effective techniques in classroom management is building trust. When teachers place emphasis on understanding their students and their goals, they can adapt their teaching experience to gain their trust. The first step to establishing trust is by recognizing and remembering student names. Make sure to practice the correct spelling and pronunciation when studying your students’ names. If you make mistakes, you can make light jokes about them and encourage your students to correct you. Students will eventually feel more comfortable and settled in their teaching environment as you grow to be familiar with their names.

Provide Positive Reinforcement

Students do not know how well they are performing in a class until someone acknowledges it. In this case, the teacher must consistently recognize when good progress is being made and let the student know about it. Making calls home can be helpful – in addition, you can connect with your student’s parents. If the parent hears about the good performance, that information travels to the student as well.

Les Elfes Winter camp - students reward

 

Reward Diligence and Effort

A motivating classroom environment is where hard work and consistent effort is valued. Many students respond well when their hard work is rewarded. You can select an outstanding student in the class each week to highlight their performances and efforts. Students in turn, will see that individual effort is recognized and they will be more motivated to continue their learning progress. The more you showcase good work and effort, the more engagement you can get from the students. The increased engagement can help improve their motivation and commitment to their learning goals.

Create an All-Inclusive Learning Experience

A good learning environment is not rigid but is flexible and ready to be adapted to any situation. There are many challenges and tasks you have to navigate through on a daily basis. Some students may experience personal problems that may be outside your control. In these cases, it is important to adjust your learning plan for those students to accommodate them.

 

Les Elfes Winter camps - good learning environment

 

Conclusion

Excellent class management requires many skills and characteristics. One of the most important ones is the ability to inspire your students and push them to reach new milestones. With these techniques and applications, you can build an inspiring learning environment and ensure your students have the resources to succeed. Add these elements into your teaching curriculum as you plan out your upcoming academic syllabus for the year. Through consistent application, your classroom is well on its way to being an inspiring learning centre.

 

Outdoor activities are one of the most successful inspiration method.

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