The man glaring at me from across the table waited for my response to his simple question, “Why do you want to work here?” So many voices in my head shouted the “perfect response” and I could not distinguish a single one. My response, like an unsuccessful souffle, was flat, “Um, everyone seems really nice.”
I shudder to think how often I gave a performance like that in other conversations.
It wasn’t just in high-stakes conversations that my brain would get the best of me. Even in everyday interactions with my colleagues my mind would move faster than my tongue, causing me to trip over my words with mispronunciations, sometimes flipping words out of order, using a word with a similar but not-quite-right meaning, and on occasion, stuttering.
Read the rest of this entry »