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How Harry Helped Me Get Over My Fear of Public Speaking

When I was young I hated reading aloud in class. I dreaded when my teacher would tell us we were going to do Popcorn Reading. While I actually could read and write very, very well, when I had to read aloud in front of anyone I would stutter, blush and sound like I couldn't read at all.

Queue: EYE ROLL.

Really, I had a terrible fear of speaking in front of the class or any strangers (in large or small groups) for a very long time.

Psych gus drag shawn

I couldn't talk to a boy without my face fully blushing until I graduated college.


Reading Harry Potter changed all of that. While I had always devoured books silently, often reading through the night, JK Rowling's works really had me thoroughly enjoying every second. I was, and am, in awe of her ability to be so creative. It still stuns me.

When I had Finn, I knew exactly what I would read aloud to him. He's only 14 months old and already I have so much fun using all different voices and accents to tell him the story so that it's truly entertaining. This did a tremendous thing for me... without me realizing it; it helped me get over my fear of public speaking.

You're told over and over again how you'll "grow out of things" or that it'll "get easier". And for new parents, you're constantly told "having a baby changes everything." [EYE ROLL.] This was one thing that changed for me, that I grew out of, that got easier. It may not be a room full of people who I'm reading aloud to, but at least it's a start.



A Bucket List Must-Read: Flavia de Luce

My latest obsession: Flavia de Luce. She's bold, smart, loves chemistry, solves crimes.. AND she's 11 years old.

I'm only finished with the first book in the series, and I have to read more. The quirky language, and the amazing character were all developed by Alan Bradley, who even said she started as a side character in another novel and actually took hold of his mind, so instead he created another whole world entirely around young Flavia.

Why is reading the rest of the series a must do for me? While there's been no shortage of strong women in my life (Leslie Knope, Emma Watson, my friends, my mom... need I go on?) I find myself gravitating toward Flavia.


She's 11 AND all of the above, and despite that, there is no sign of the awkwardness that most girls her age feel. Or do they really feel that? Was it just me who was painfully shy, had braces, wore baggy clothes and was obsessed with my Starter Jacket?

This isn't just a young woman I'd like to add to my own List of Inspirational People. I would love my son to look up to her, too!