Giving my first presentation

When I gave my first talk at a meetup I was super nervous and I remember I was shaking so much that I don't think people could hear much of what I was saying. Looking back I only remember it as a good experience even though it doesn't sound that great, but it was my first real tech talk about how to build a Super Mario game in 20 minutes. I had prepared steps that one could easily do to build a game that everyone already knew. It was fun to share and doing something. I also did it because I wanted to become part of the group and the Copenhagen tech scene where I had moved to 6 months earlier. Being part of a group that meets and connects and discuss javascript, that was quite a milestone in my career.

I never really liked to present before, but I think it was because when it was earlier, it was forced in relation to school. In cases where I maybe had something I wanted to share, I didn't have the opportunity. I didn't explicitly seek out the opportunity elsewhere, so there is nobody to blame, but I think if I knew where and how I would have tried earlier. Share a passion with others is a super way to connect with other people, you speak the same language as others in the group.

It was also about doing something new that I hadn't done before, I had seen others on many occasions present stuff with great confidence. It can be really persuasive seeing a good presenter tell a story and something he/she wants you to do, but you also know that it is not her/his first presentation and that the person has likely done it before. That was also a great motivator for me to begin public speaking, knowing that you could become a better speaker, but that you had to at least do the first talk before you could call yourself good!

I have been super grateful for the places that I got to give my first presentations, having a space to express yourself is a huge thing, but because it feels like work and emotional, I don't think I have appreciated it as much as it has helped me.

Giving a presentation takes a lot of work because it forces you to think about what you want to say and how you want to say it. It is like that topic you want to talk with your friends about, but with a presentation put the full spotlight on you, so you can't depend on your friends chipping in and helping to make the conversation interesting and that is scary. Nobody is interesting all the time, but one can be interesting for 20 minutes if they prepare themselves.

I organize meetups today because I want to give other people that experience that I had, that opportunity to connect with others. It takes a lot of time organizing and planning, and I have never earned any money directly from it, but it is a big joy doing it for my past self and others that want to join the conversation.

Tags: #meetup #speaking