I’ve read about, watched, and practiced public speaking. I’ve been through seemingly endless hours of personal coaching in it. And while I don’t guarantee you will never see these tips anywhere else, I want to offer here a breath of fresh air from the absolute inanity of tips like “rehearse in front of a mirror” and “practice, practice, practice” that adorn the first page of Google results for “public speaking tips”.
1. Get on stage early
I’ve never once heard this tip, but it’s the single best way I know of to deal with pre-speech nervousness. Spend as much time as possible in front of my audience before the speech starts. That’s all.
Are you speaking in a class? Get up there as soon as the teacher starts jotting down her final notes on the last speaker. Maybe you’re in a row of presentations at work? Stand up and get your PowerPoint plugged in and ready to go as soon as you can. If you can walk around the stage a bit, do that. You’re getting to know the territory. When you’re giving your speech in another minute and a half, it’ll feel just a bit more like your home turf. Read More
This is my first profiles in awesomeness post, and I think an appropriate subject is John Goddard. Here’s why.
When John Goddard was 15, a friend of his dad’s told him he regretted not doing all the things he wanted to when he was John’s age. John, struck by the comment, got out a yellow legal pad and scribbled out 127 things he wanted to do before he died.
He was a pretty ambitious 15-year old. Heavy hitting items include:
- Circumnavigate the globe
- Climb Cheop’s pyramid
- Climb Kilimanjaro, Rainier, the Matterhorn, and Everest
- Milk a poisonous snake
- Hold breath underwater for 2.5 minutes
- Explore the Amazon, Congo, and Nile rivers from source to mouth
Etc, etc, for 127 items.
Now here’s the ridiculous thing. While most 15-year old boys could have compiled a similar list, most of us wouldn’t dedicate the rest of our lives to achieving every single one of them. Read More
If you ever undertake some project, goal, or quest that requires a serious commitment of time, there will undoubtedly be some point during your journey where you will pause to reflect and find that you’d rather do anything that what you’re doing. “Pluck my eyes out. If I can’t see, I don’t have to finish writing my novel.”
Good for you. That means you’re doing something worthwhile. The only reason you made this much progress is because you knew it would pay off in the end. It’s awfully inconvenient now– heck, you’d rather be blind– but keep dreaming about the finish line, because if you got you into this mess, it can get you out.
And that’s what I want to talk about now– why you got into this mess.
You did it because you thought it would be worthwhile. Not easy, but worthwhile. And now that it’s living up to your expectations, you’re taking some time to reflect. And potentially gauge your eyes out.
Here’s something I think. I think it with all of my heart:
Never, ever evaluate Read More
Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness, that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be?
What would you attempt to do if you knew you would not fail?
Considering this is about life goals, you might think I have some sentimental attachment to other goals that people make, like New Year’s resolutions.
I don’t. New Year’s resolutions are awful. If you want to reform yourself and think it’s worth waiting until next January to do so, you’re raising my blood pressure. In fact, leave. Here’s a link to facebook, where you can piddle away your time until the new year: www.facebook.com.
Instead, let’s talk about how to make life goals.
I’ve seen a few blogs and books that tell you how to make your list of life’s goals. Those raise my blood pressure too. If you want a discussion of whether you should use pen or pencil, I can provide links. If you want to know the best kind of paper for writing your goals on, I’ll be glad to refer you elsewhere.
All of that is immaterial compared to two things: making a list and working on it.
Don’t worry about anything else. Use a notepad, Notepad, a Moleskine, a napkin, whatever. If there’s no paper around and you tattoo it on your arm, all the better (send pictures if you choose that route). The thing is, you can make a perfectly good and fulfilling list of life’s goals without reading another sentence of advice. I encourage you to take a few minutes and put together at least a draft. When you come back, I’ll ask you some questions just to make sure you didn’t forget anything at the very bottom of your heart.
And if you think you have it and never read this blog again, then all the best!
I know of four questions that trigger that wild, joyful thinking so critical to making goals more than anything else I’ve heard. Read More