A few months ago, I was asked to present at a conference I’ve been regularly attending for some years now. For the first time in my life, I should add. Not that I hadn’t played with the idea before; I love sharing my ideas and I have my own blog, so presenting ideas to an audience in the flesh should not be a big deal, I’d thought. However, to cut it short, I refused in the end.
Here are five excuses I made to myself. Note: Now that I think about it, some of the excuses were latent in my subconscious mind at the time of my decision and they didn’t surface until recently.
😦 The offer didn’t come at the right time. It was back in May when I was dealing with some problems at work and my teaching enthusiasm had slightly faded. However, if I had given it a try, such a big challenge would have pushed me forward and, most importantly, it would have given me a big dose of enthusiasm, which I clearly needed.
😦 It was too far out of my comfort zone, mainly because it was the first time. But, as a teacher I admire said to me, there always has to be a first time. Plus I know all too well that staying in one’s comfort zone isn’t always to the good.
😦 The talk was supposed to be at a conference which I had attended regularly for a couple of years. They say that ‘no one is a prophet in his own land’so perhaps I was worried that some attendee’s ideas wouldn’t be taken seriously. The truth is that being a regular teacher and a conference attendee is a bonus because you know who you are talking to and what the people want. Moreover, the people there are very friendly and I’m sure they would have accepted me without reservations.
😦 Why would anybody be interested in a talk given by some non-native teacher of English if there are much bigger names on the program? Well, I personally choose workshops based on the content, not the mother tongue of the presenter, so why the hell did this idea come to mind at all?
😦 What on earth would I actually talk about? Should it be a topic I’m interested in (Dogme, corpora, for instance) or should it be something which is generally popular with conference attendees (useful tips for lessons and no-prep activities, for example)? In fact, if I had researched a little, I’m sure I’d have finally discovered a nice overlap. I do share tips and activities on my blog after all, so I’d surely have found some useful and intriguing stuff to share with the folks there.
Well, I hope this write-up will give me some courage to overcome my fears. 🙂
What about you? Do you have a similar experience?