Sometimes, we don’t feel like ourselves when we speak in English. It’s as if we need to act out a new persona to do that. I actually see nothing wrong with it.
I was training a friend recently and he suddenly started making a lot of mistakes with his English. The thing is, the guy I was training has pretty okay English but it got really bad after a couple of minutes.
I asked him if he was feeling nervous and he eventually admitted it.
From my eyes, it’s as if he suddenly got scared.
People don’t usually admit this but one big reason why were not comfortable speaking in English is that we’re not used to it. We only had one hour or two hours of English class at school and we don’t usually have someone who speaks in English well.
Plus points if you have friends who can speak in English well or you have an aunt or uncle from the States to help you practice. Unfortunately, not everyone has that.
Enter celebrity mode.
My friend was a music lover. He likes rock bands. At first I asked him to introduce himself starting with his name where he was from and that he’s applying for work at a call center.
Try it for your self. Hi my names is Kevin and I’m from Parañaque and I’m applying for work in a call center.
When he did it had the same scared delivery.
I asked him to do something different. I asked about his favorite band and introduce him as a part of his favorite band and that he will start working in a call center.
Guess what? It was like, hi I’m Kevin of Matchbox Twenty and I’ll start to work in a call center.
What do you think sounded better?
You’re right celebrity mode works. Here’s why:
When you copy from someone you admire, you get to do things you don’t think you can do because you’re just acting things out. Thinking of what to do next comes naturally because you already saw it happen. There is no need for you to imagine yourself doing it. It’s just you imagining your hero and imitating what he or she does. It makes things pretty easy.
Back in business training we were asked to introduce ourselves to everyone in a small room full of people. With that event happening late at night, everyone was feeling crappy and since we already knew most of everyone in the room, we each gave everyone a sloppy introduction.
In the next activity, the trainer asked us to introduce ourselves to everyone in the room but this time, as our favorite movie character. I didn’t have anyone in mind so I randomly picked James Bond. I walked around the room introducing myself as James Bond.
The experience made me realize that I could be suave, charming and attractive when I introduce myself to others. The guy who introduced himself as “The Grinch” was pretty in character and scared everyone a bit. That part of the night, everyone was having fun and the energy in the room just went up.
What I’m trying to say has nothing to do with pretending to be someone you’re not. I’m saying is you should have more fun playing around with this. Call center work is not just a problem solving job but an acting job as well. You’ll be given a script and you’ll be asked to act out the script on the phone with the customer. You can do it in stage fright or you can do it having fun.
Would you be willing to let go of stage fright and have fun playing with your celebrity mode?
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