I have been plagued by panic, insecurity, or whatever you want to call it for my entire life. However, I have always wanted to take an improv/acting class and get over my fear of public speaking. So, after avoiding it for several years, I made it a 2010 goal and completed my ten week course last night with a performance. Some of you may know that I have an infamous right hand that takes on a life of its' own when I am nervous. The first time that we had to practice alone in front of each other, I spazzed. My hand was waving so hard that people in China were feeling the breeze. I caused enough personal havoc that after 5 weeks in, I wanted to quit for the first time. But, alas...I stuck to it and pulled through. For our final performance, we were allowed to invite guests to watch us but even though I had some gracious co-workers who wanted to attend, I decided to go it alone. I took the class for me, I panicked for me, I cried in the shower for me (not really). So, I needed to perform for me. It wasn't about whether I was good or not, it was about me getting up there and proving to myself that fear does not always win! Sometimes, we have to take that leap and see where we land. It was a great experience and to be honest, it happened so quick and I was in such a weird frame of mind that I barely remember doing it. I just went with it. The funniest part for me was afterwards when an audience member came up to say "good work" and I said "thank you" and he responded with, "Oh, you really have an American accent!" I wish I could do an Aussie one because then I would have just played it off as if I were a genius with accents but no luck. The nicest part of this class though is the residual benefit of spending the last 10 weeks getting to know some really great and interesting people. My personal success hinged on a group success, as well because we all grew together and really wanted each other to succeed. So, what's next? I have decided to take the plunge and sign up for the level two course that starts in a month! Let's see how it goes! And scene.