How Do You Spell Relief?

W-H-E-W! It never ceases to amaze me that I was a theater major in college and really believed that someone like me with such stage fright and public speaking anxiety would be happy with a career on acting. Don’t get me wrong – I do love to talk, and folks think I am funny. If I know peops well, I am not shy. But in a roomful of folks I do not know, I feel awkward and sometimes feel the strain of making small talk. And getting up in front of peops to formally present a topic still gives me butterflies.

I wonder, why do I put myself through this? It is not that I volunteer. But if asked, I always say yes. In the past few years, I have been asked to speak more and more. I might go a few months without being asked, but then I will get a flurry of invitations. Although still anxious from top to bottom – about creating the talk, then practicing it, then a week beforehand wishing i could stop time – then the day of, feeling like part of me is dragging the other part, kicking and screaming, to whatever venue – I am actually less nervous about speaking publicly than I used to be. What I was most nervous about for today’s talk, besides the fact that it was a Grand Rounds talk, which I have always thought of as intimidating, was that I would not be able to fit in all I planned to say in the allotted half hour, and worried also about the video clip not working or being loud enough. Happily, I got to the conference room early and was able to troubleshoot. The hourlong presentation was split with a dietitian, who spoke first. I had seen PowerPoint, so was able to tailor my talk to not repeat anything in his. He also helped with audiovisuals, getting the clip to work. So everything ended up going very smoothly with a great audience response and I caught only one person dozing and another yawning. Good questions were asked.

Interestingly, I had learned a lot from previous talks – I had a feeling I would run over so I kept track of the time, and when I saw that things were getting close, I skipped a few slides and cut to the chase by summarizing the last few slides and getting to the clip, which I wanted to end with.

The talk was similar to one I had given recently, with a few changes. I now have a presentation that I can build on, lengthen or shorten very easily, which took a long time to develop. In fact, I have several types of talks. Things change a lot in Obesity Medicine every year, but there are also lots of basics which remain stable. In a way, I do enjoy doing these talks, especially when an audience responds well. When I gave my first ever talk years ago, not about obesity, but I think about diabetes, My voice and legs shook during the entire presentation. No cartoons, no jokes. Now, once I get started, I feel much more at ease and feel like myself rather than an automaton, finding my style, whatever that may be. I mean, I could not describe it to you, but I know it is ocque because it feels ocque. If i do make a wry comment, I get laffs, which is very gratifying. Also, knowing my subject feels fantastic. So does not being afraid of the audience’s questions, because I know I will be able to answer them – the audience always knows less than I do at this point, because I am not speaking to obesity specialists but to folks who know little about how to treat obesity. I could talk for hours and hours on multiple obesity related topics. It is amazing. It is almost unimaginable that over the course of the last ten years, have truly become a specialist. Not like the giants in the field, who do research and publish widely in the medical literature and organize conferences and write lay and professional books, and who have been at it for decades, but i have definitely made progress.

My next talk is in a bit over two weeks and it will pretty much be the same one I gave today, only I will be able to finish it without rushing through because I have a little more time.

The day started very early – cb was worried about lots of things and could not sleep, and woke early, so I woke early and decided to go to the gym. A very very lame movie – yet another – how do so many of these lame and sappy and contrived movies get made – there are seemingly endless numbers of them!- was playing. The backup plan, it was called. I kept trying to figure out of the actress was J Lo – and it turned out to be – but was not sure, but what made me think It was J Lo was her profile – she has a vey distinctive nose, which may or may not have been bobbed, another thing I wondered about as I watched the movie. Her acting was competent -barely, but how much can you do with a shitty script? But the male actor – let us say that, unlike JLo, he did not do justice to the (shitty) script. He was really horrible and the chemistry between the two was nonexistent. Why did I watch it? Because I am bored of my music, I have a hard time reading on elliptical anymore, there were no podcasts or audiobooks that I felt like listening to, and even a bad movie passes the time. Unless it is an action adventure, which makes time stand still in the last circle of hell.

The Weight Watchers news: down .6! The maintenance fluctuation.

Due to so little sleep, I thought I might treat myself to what I consider one of life’s most precious indulgences – succumb to a nap this afternoon, but when I got home, I was not sure I would be sleepy enough. I should read MKSAP or answer email or something, but now I feel my eyes growing heavy.

But first. I have some sweet potatoes roasting – I must remember to turn off our high end convection oven before nothing remains but a couple of charred skins.

This entry was posted on Thursday, February 12th, 2015 at 5:49 pm and is filed under aspirations, being a doc, career, on being a doctor, weight management. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.

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