In the midst of all the noise and confusion, sometimes silence speaks the loudest.
As speakers, we want to stand out, to have people take notice. But often, in the attempt to gain the attention, the tendency is to look out at what others are doing; so we strive to be funnier, louder, more daring than everyone else. Unfortunately, in focusing on what others are doing, we lose the key connection with ourselves and what makes us so unique. As a result, our message becomes diluted, and lacks authenticity.
The importance of trusting who we are really hit home this weekend, when I attended an event called Awaken the Rebel. One of the speakers, Steve Truitt, gave us an assignment: to meet with other participants over lunch and talk about our definition of success. As part of that discussion we were to answer the questions, ‘What do we love? What makes us happy?’
I was amazed at what I witnessed.
Here we were all perfect strangers sitting around the table, yet when I listened and watched each one share what they loved, they literally glowed with the telling. It was like watching the sunrise come up over the horizon. There was this exquisite opening of the heart as they revealed their greatest truth – what brought them joy.
I realized then – that it can be as simple as that. If we, as speakers, can connect to that light, that joy inside of us, and communicate that to the audience, then we have succeeded in our mission.
When we can claim our own voice, speak our own stories, and share our own lessons – the audience will be entranced. We don’t have to tell funny jokes, or play loud music. We don’t have to come out wearing our skivvies to entertain. We only need to be who we are.
And when we are true to that – we cannot fail.
It is as simple as that.
So, the next time you are working on your speech, remember that sweet question, “What brings me joy?” And if you can touch that and share it honestly with your audience, I can assure you it will be a richer experience for all.
To your journey!