Last week I did something that scared me. I stood in front of nearly 200 financial planners and I talked to them about why financial blogs are a good thing.
I’m a confident writer. I’ve been doing this long enough that I know my strength and my limitations. I’m less confident as a speaker. I don’t have time to pause to collect my thoughts. I’m not able to edit. I’m afraid of being trapped in a corner without being able to talk my way out. Basically, I’m scared to speak.
It would be easy to simply refuse the chances that come my way. When somebody asks me to speak in front of a group, I could say “no”. When radio and television stations call for an interview, I could say “no”. But for the past two years, I’ve been following my own policy to say “yes” to new chances.
To say “yes” is to live in fear. My goal is to continually improve myself to become better than I am today. One way to do that is to do the things that scare me, to take them on as challenges, and to learn from them — even if I fail.
In mid-November, a local station asked me to appear on live television. “I realize it’s short notice,” the producer wrote, “but we’d love to have you on the show if you’re available tonight.” I was frightened. I thought about recent taped television interviews that I had hated. I was afraid of what might happen.
But I also thought about the things that had gone right. I thought of how my speaking skills had improved over the past year. And then I thought of the book I was reading, a book that I had bought for $1.29 at the local store. The Magic of Thinking Big was a huge bestseller during the 1960s. Written by Dr. David Schwartz, a professor at Georgia State University, the book contains dozens of practical tips on how to take risks to achieve big goals. Schwartz argues that nobody will believe in you until you believe in yourself.
So when the television producer asked if I wanted to appear on his show, I thought big. “Sure,” I said. “I’ll do it.” I acted confidently, but on the inside I was frightened. What I needed was techniques to build up my confidence and to overcome my fear.
63. Why is the author afraid of speaking in public?
A. He is aware of his potential. B. He has few chances to talk.
C. He is not able to edit what he says. D. He likes writing better.
64. The underlined words “my own policy” in Paragraph 3 probably mean ________.
A. self-improving through challenges
B. hesitating before chances
C. turning down the invitations
D. saying yes to fear
65. The author mentioned the book The Magic of Thinking Big mainly because ________.
A. it was inspiring B. it was a bestseller
C. its author was famous D. its price was attractive
66. What is the author’s purpose to write the passage?
A. To analyze his strength and weaknesses.
B. To give practical tips on speaking in public.
C. To persuade people to follow his example.
D. To share his experiences of overcoming fear.
To Friend or Not to Friend
We all love our parents and turn to them when we’re in need, but would you like them to hear the conversations you have with your friends on the school playground or lunch queue? Social networking sites have become extensions of the school hallways, so would you add your parents as “friends” and allow them to view your online activities and conversations with friends?
In the past the generation gap included a technology gap, where children were up to date with latest technology and parents were left behind, content to continue their day to day lives as they always had because they had no need to know more about technology. However, more and more parents are beginning to realize just how important social networks are in their lives. This realization has given many parents the motivation to educate themselves about social networking sites.
These days many people are attracted to social networking sites because they can choose who they have around them; there’s also a certain amount of control over privacy that we don’t get in real life. Sometimes we feel that privacy is violated when we must accept a “friend” request from a parent or family member.
It’s a difficult choice whether or not to allow a parent to become a part of our online lives. On the one hand we don’t want to “reject” their request because that might hurt their feelings or make them feel you have something to hide. On the other hand if you do accept, then you could have a sense of being watched and no longer feel free to comment or communicate the way you did before.
A recent survey suggested that parents shouldn’t take it personally if their child ignores their request: “When a teen ignores a parent’s friend request, it doesn’t necessarily mean that they are hiding something, but it could mean that this is one part of their life where they want to be independent.”
Perhaps talking with parents and giving explanations would help soften the blow if you do choose not to add them to your friends list.
67. From Paragraph 2, we learn that ______.
A. parents feel secure about their privacy online
B. social networks successfully fill the generation gap
C. parents have realized the importance of social networks
D. social networks offer a platform for parents to communicate
68. Teenagers may refuse a parent’s friend request because ______.
A. they hide something from their parents
B. they are unwilling to be watched by parents
C. their parents tend to fall behind in technology
D. their parents make negative comments on them
69. The passage is mainly about ______.
A. privacy online B. social networks
C. the generation gap D. parents’ friend requests
70. The passage is written mainly for ______.
A. parents B. teenagers
C. teachers D. researchers