Photos of Raul Colon Web Developer Puerto Rico

I have always gotten myself into trouble for not Pacing Myself. I remember that a full year after getting out of Initial Entry Training (IET) for the Army I had to do a PT test. I remember while at IET, I was running two miles in less than 10 minutes and 30 seconds which for was a huge accomplishment. A year later I had not been running or training as I did in IET so I ended up running the first 400 meters as if I was going to bring my two miles to less than 9 minutes. Reality was that I hit a wall and ran out of steam and couldn’t finish my run. I decided to train hard for the next Physical Training Exam in a month. I took my savings and reached a deal with a personal trainer at my gym to train me for the next 3 weeks.

The Importance of Pacing Myself

I was able to get back on track finishing the two miles in less than 13 minutes. I finished with highest running time for my age group. I failed the initial test  because I was not being able to pace myself.

More than a week ago when I presented at one of my sessions at Hispanicize, I ended up speaking fast and going through my presentation at lightening speed (as always). Thanks to my good friend @jaqcarly who was telling me to slow down, I did just that, slow down. Although I had some glitches in that first session, it earned me a business card with the message, “Awesome Presentation” .  I think I need to work on my presentation skills.

When I compare my presentation to my failed IET running time, I am able to find many reasons why I think I talk fast.

  • I want to keep the momentum going. I see too many people who are lethargic when they speak. On the other hand,  I guess if people can’t understand what I am saying, my message won’t get across to them. I am going to have to slow down and find a way to emit the same energy.
  • Cut down on the material I wanted to share. Usually I have loads of information I want to share. I am going to have to focus on the key points that will resonate with my audience.
  • Move around. Everytime I get stuck in front of a Podium, I end up trying to release my energy in another way (which ends up making me talk fast). I guess if I can walk around and release my energy, it might slow down my pace.

Besides speaking fast, another place where I still need to improve a bit more is on my writing. I need to pace myself and at least write a few posts a day so I can continue sharing my ideas with readers like you.

I will be working hard on improving my flaws and have learned many things from speaking at Hispanicize where I took the stage 4 times.

Is there anything you do that I can improve to pace yourself? Any Advice?

Do you need to pace yourself at something?


photo credit by familymwr

6 Comments

  1. Gabriele Maidecchi on April 18, 2011 at 9:22 am

    The speaking fast part is a very common trait of people passionate about what they do. If you truly enjoy a topic, you want to get to the point fast, make people understand and see how awesome is it, and you tend to fast forward, ’cause in your mind you already know all the rest. Unfortunately others don’t.
    I don’t do presentations usually but when I have a meeting I have the tendency to skip to the important part because I ran the whole thing in my mind more than once, and it comes natural to just do things fast. It’s something I presume you learn with time and training, so nothing too bad.



  2. Gabriele Maidecchi on April 18, 2011 at 9:22 am

    The speaking fast part is a very common trait of people passionate about what they do. If you truly enjoy a topic, you want to get to the point fast, make people understand and see how awesome is it, and you tend to fast forward, ’cause in your mind you already know all the rest. Unfortunately others don’t.
    I don’t do presentations usually but when I have a meeting I have the tendency to skip to the important part because I ran the whole thing in my mind more than once, and it comes natural to just do things fast. It’s something I presume you learn with time and training, so nothing too bad.



    • Raul Colon on April 18, 2011 at 12:27 pm

      Gabriele,

      Finally someone that does understand me. I think that is my main problem I think most people know enough or more about the subject to simply refresh them but every once in a while I run into someone that is looking at me from the standpoint of what am I trying to say!



  3. Rick Stilwell on April 18, 2011 at 12:47 pm

    Do you do run-through’s in preparation for the speaking itself? Sometimes that helps you get over the nervous talkingwaytoofast energy of your openings, helps you settle down into that pace you’re looking for, I think. Thanks for posting – good for all of us, in more than speaking, to pace ourselves.



    • Raul Colon on April 18, 2011 at 12:56 pm

      Yes I do run-throughs but on that specific occasions I got a bit uncomfortable with trying to use my Ipad for notes.

      I do agree that I need to pace myself in many things including eating, working, speaking, and the list goes on!



  4. Prometeo on April 18, 2011 at 3:51 pm

    Having preached for a few years and talked in front of students I can tell you that when it comes to stand in front of a crowd no amount of experience will take away the jitters. Something that helps thought is to rehearse what you are going to say in front of a mirror. When you stand in front of a crowd pick a few faces and look at them during your presentation. Usually I pick someone in the left, middle and right of the audience so that when I look at them people will see that I’m looking at the whole audience.

    About pacing try recording your rehearsal and playing it back. Have someone listen to it. In my case my wife is the one that gives me feedback whenever I speak in front of an audience and I give her the feedback when she is the one speaking.

    There are many other pointers on public speaking but it would fill this whole commenting box with another entry and make it too long. I’m working on a booklet for preachers on how to speak in front of an audience. When I get it finished I’ll give you a copy.

    One more thing. When one speaks publicly no matter how well it goes you will tend to see only the flaws, that is why feedback is really important.