Math Survival Guide: Dealing with Math Anxiety 03

:: Dealing with Math Anxiety
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"Never stand begging for something that you have the power to earn."
-- Cervantes

          For the thesis “defense” I had to present and explain the proof to a

group of 17 people: 12 professors (with Ph.D’s) and 5 other graduate

students…  After my presentation, they got to ask questions and I had to know

the answers.  The whole thing was supposed to take about an hour.  To say

that I was nail-biting, eye-twitching, freaked-out nervous was an

understatement.  The fact was that I’d been about to jump out of my own skin

over that thesis defense for the entire EIGHT MONTHS! 


          I’ll never forget something that happened while I was driving over to

school that morning…  It suddenly occurred to me…  I was going to have to

do the defense no matter what… and I could do it while being nervous… 

or I could do it while being calm.  Either way, it was going to happen!  I realized

that I had a choice to make:  be nervous or be calm.  I decided that being calm

would be so much more pleasant.  So, I instantly calmed down and stayed

that  way the entire time.  It was amazing – just a simple decision and it





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