Reading aloud has always been a terrifying event for myself, I’ve developed many avoidance techniques which have mostly been successful and I’ve had to use the final technique in just being absolutely hopeless when challenged to read aloud and hope for sympathy.
I don’t know where this fear originally started but I do being absolutely terrified waiting for my turn to read aloud in class, I was probably 12 or 13 and the class where reading King Lear aloud, taking turns in reading a paragraph or so each. It hurts to think about it even now though it happened so many years ago. The fear of getting it wrong especially english language led me to fail English CSE, a rare event at school though I got top marks for sciences and maths.
Perhaps a teacher should have noticed the disparity with my topics and done something about it. Education then, as one teacher told to my sister, was to keep children occupied until they could go to work in the local factories.
The need to please and do well just made me freeze, I just couldn’t put pen to paper for the fear of getting it wrong, I just couldn’t read out loud in case I got it wrong.
The thoughts of:
- I really NEED to read well to impress others
I really NEED to understand the words
I really NEED to understand the sentence
I really NEED to understand the context
I really NEED to remember what I’ve just read
These thoughts just compounded my fear.
However all is not lost, there is a way out of this fear, if you are prepared to change.
I discovered that I could improve my reading aloud by applying the fundamental principles of the Alexander Technique. It takes time as these reading habits run deep within, and are very tetchy habits that like to stay just where they are, they also operate everywhere where I think I need to impress.
Reading aloud is still work in progress, but I seem to get better all the time. Using The Alexander Techniques 5 Point plan is a winner for me.