This topic may seem different from what I normally write about which is how to become a better speaker. This article is all being you, the imperfect speaker. There will be many times when you will watch another speaker speak on stage and compare yourself to that speaker. You’ll say things like, “Wow, I wish I was that good!” or ask yourself questions like “Maybe I should be doing that?”
What you do not realize is that the speaker on stage has probably been traveling their journey for years ahead of you. You will get there, too, with training, practice, and mentoring.
The first characteristic of an imperfect speaker is not to compare yourself with anyone else. As you listen to other speakers, you might be thinking that they were an overnight success, when in reality it may have taken them 20 years to get there. We don’t see the journey they’ve been on, and chances are, if you knew their journey, you wouldn’t want it.
One of my superstar clients, Angela, struggled with speaking for years. She had a great message and a heart-moving story. She vowed to God that she would share her testimony and dedicate her life to sharing it. She spoke on many stages and got very little results–until she joined my year-long Public Speaking Mastermind program.
When we first started to work on her story, I could see she wasn’t connecting to her message. She had been desensitized. After working with me, going through the training, she got connected with her message, delivered it, and opened the hearts of her listeners.
The next event that happened was a miracle.
She spoke on my stage (which I often invite my students do) and in the audience was one of my friends who is a movie producer. He heard her story and asked if he could produce her documentary. She is now a speaker and a movie star!
It sounds sensational, doesn’t it? You may be saying to yourself, "I wish I was blessed like that" or "I wish God would give me a favor like that." You don’t know what Angela gave up getting there. What she gave up, as she shares in her personal testimony, where her two sons who were killed in a tragic automobile accident while she was away in Japan serving in the military.
Never wish to be like another speaker because God gave you your own unique message. Only you can deliver that message to people that can only hear it from you. Nobody else. It is yours to deliver.
I used to think, that if you can’t deliver your message, it will be taken away from you and given to someone else who can. One Sunday, I was in church, and I heard the pastor say, “God has given you unique gifts that only you can use. And if those gifts aren’t used, they will be unused for all eternity.”
In that moment I realized, that’s the same with your message. If you don’t get out there and deliver your message, it will be undelivered for all eternity! The opportunity to reach people you were supposed to help, to end their suffering, to change their lives, and to create their legacy is gone.
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