Presentations, Nerves and Triumphs


The last time I had this feeling, I was 5 minutes from stepping out on the ice for my last skate as a competitive figure skater.

I felt those nerves all over again.

I was sick to my stomach.  I was nervous.  I was hopeful.  I was excited.  I was terrified.

I was thrilled.

This week I culminated my toughest work assignment to date.

It all started 5 weeks ago when I was named the lead for a new project and promptly jumped on the chance without any consideration of how this would actually be accomplished (typical).

I dove right in and as with any new experience, basically made it up as I went along.

There was little sleep (even less than usual).  There were tears.  There was sweat.  (There was no blood).

At the beginning of this past week, I was given about a 17.8-minute notice before heading out the door (not good for the packing game) to catch a plane.  I was headed to finish off this monster and give the final presentation.

The week was made more interesting by the fact that a) I forgot some items –namely, toothpaste and enough professional outfits for the required number of days (kind of important) b) slight sleep deprivation had me more dramatic than usual (hard to imagine I know)  c) early in the week I learned that 1 presentation had turned into 3.

Let the nerves begin.

With the week’s deadlines changing by the minute and mountains of work yet to be done before the big reveal, I found myself experiencing something new.  Not only was I in charge but I had to answer for the final product.

This kind of responsibility fueled these 5 days.

It was a spirited week that involved:

1)     Falling asleep in hotel bed with room service food in hand (classy)

2)     Team camaraderie in the form of hysterical Youtube videos (breaks up stress well)

3)     Solid amounts of “working lunches” (and breakfast and dinners)

4)     Discussion with father at 11pm about the effects of stress on the face (how will I stay young forever?!)

Friday came and went.

3 presentations later I was elated.

Yes, I drank inordinate amounts of water.  Yes, I ran to the bathroom every 5 minutes.  Yes, I was truly nervous.

But I powered through and delivered.

When the client stood up, looked around the room and firmly uttered “good,” I felt truly proud of myself.



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