August 15, 2007

How can you hate it if you've never tried it?



I read this comment on a blog today:

"I absolutely hate speaking and this will be my first time doing public speaking."

Is it possible to hate something you've never tried? (And don't get smart with me and say something like, "Well, I've never murdered someone, but I know I wouldn't like it.")

Many years ago, we had relatives visiting us for a few days. We decided to go out for Chinese food, and one of the family members said, "You guys go ahead, we'll have pizza. J and I don't like Chinese food." J was, at the time, a toddler.

Eight years later, J came to visit and one night we went out for Chinese food (we convinced her to try it). I think she ate some fried rice.

I wonder, if her mother hadn't instilled her own dislike of Chinese food into J, might J have developed a taste for it?

I can understand how someone who's never done any public speaking might think they wouldn't like it just because many other people (who've tried it) don't like it.

But until they give it a shot, they really have no way of knowing how they might feel in front of an audience.

They might actually thrive on the audience's attention. They might discover a hidden ability to make people laugh. They might find that their voice is more powerful and persuasive than they had imagined. They might realize that public speaking can be fun!

Keep an open mind about egg drop soup, spicy eggplant, tofu . . . and public speaking.

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2 comments. Please add yours! :

Rowan Manahan said...

I learned from my Chinese friends in college that the protocol was this:

1. Eat it.
2. Decide whether you like it or not.
3. Ask what was in it.

I'm passing this on to my kids and it appears to be working ...

I look forward to doing the same with public speaking skills for them.

glitterlisa said...

Now I want dim sum.

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