Conference Presentations, Part II: Combating Anxiety

Much like Colin Firth in The King’s Speech, many of us are terrified of public speaking.

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Giant hat and microphone combo FTW. Source: thinkingfaith.org

Unfortunately, saying words in front of other humans remains an important part of academic life, especially at venues like conferences. In a continuation of my series on giving presentations, I want to share some tips and tricks I recently learned from Theatre and Speech Communication professor Julie Kiernan on dealing with public speaking anxiety.

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My Favorite Work Spaces

As a grad student, it is crucial to have a few go-to spots where I know I can automatically get into a productive frame of mind. I call upon each of them for different reasons and at different times. Here are a few of the beautiful places that help me get my work accomplished every day:

The library

A sunny corner of my university library

A sunny corner of my university library

Soo original, I know. But my university just completed construction on a gorgeous new library, so I take advantage of it at every possible opportunity. The best part: there are private (sound-proof!) study rooms that you can reserve for a study date with friends. With whiteboard walls, people! Walls you can WRITE ON! Enough said.

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Top 5 Grad Student Procrastination Activities

Like many of you, I suspect, I am an excellent procrastinator. Today, for example, is definitely a Lazy Sunday (think: “the Chronic – what – cles of Narnia”). But time wasting, especially when homework awaits, is more than, well, just a way to pass the time. It’s an art form. You have to put yourself in the right frame of mind to ignore your other responsibilities. With that said, below are my top 5 techniques for procrastination.

Too true. Courtesy of Creative Commons

Too true. Courtesy of Creative Commons

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