It can be daunting when you are tasked with entertaining someone else. It is something that inevitably comes up for all of us at some point, though, so it is always good to be prepared.
The good news is that there are several things you can do to ensure you are fully prepared, so that you are not nervous or unready to entertain – whether it is amusing children, friends, or even someone or some people who you have never met before.
The first thing to remember is that you must also be comfortable; if you are uncomfortable in your surroundings or uneasy then you will not be able to entertain to the best of your ability. Do not put yourself in an environment that you are unhappy with – even the greatest actors have to build themselves up gradually before they are ready to perform on the big stage, it is exactly the same for you.
It sounds obvious, but forward thinking is the key. Plan ahead and ensure that you know what you are going to be doing. The last thing you want to do is turn up to a group and find they are expecting something completely different to what you are prepared for. It does not take much time to do the research, but it really pays dividends. Often there will be shared interests to make your life easier.
Of course, there are times when you cannot put in a little bit of research time in advance. In these situations simply ask the person you are expected to entertain politely, but firmly, what they are expecting. You will have to be direct and vocal, if dealing with children or large groups you may have to be particularly stern – imagine you are a teacher.
It can be a stressful situation, but it does not need to be. Next time you are in a position where you have to entertain follow these steps and you will be fine. A few minutes of research beforehand will make your life much easier.