You can’t acquire confidence by reading about it. You become confident by doing. Before you succeed you may have to fail for a while. You need a safe place in which to practice and get constructive feedback.
It’s all very well to “say” step out of your comfort zone, but each one of us is unique. A big step for one person might be a small step for someone else. It all depends on where you’re coming from, your history, and your unique personality. If you’re just learning to swim, you wouldn’t want to enter yourself for an Olympic swimming event. If you go too far too soon you’ll become overwhelmed. At that point, you just give up. Continue reading “Speaking with confidence”
In the 1987 comedy, Planes, Trains, and Automobiles, stressed marketing executive, Neal Page (Steve Martin), is reluctantly trapped in a shared hotel room with an optimistic and talkative curtain-ring salesman, Del Griffith (John Candy). Del can’t stop talking about the boring details of his life. Eventually Neal loses his cool. After a long tirade, he shouts, “And here’s another thing: Have a point! It makes it so much more interesting for the listener.” Continue reading “Purpose, relevancy, and ideas”
Do you hate to wait? Most of us do. Yet we wait for trains, in doctors’ offices, at airports. We flee from unstructured time. We try to fill every fatiguing moment with a host of distractions. And that leaves us time poor. Continue reading “Time poverty”
Perfectionism will kill your writing. Perfectionists are quick to judge, and that can be a good thing under certain conditions. But not when writing the first draft. First drafts aren’t meant to be publishable. Writers must learn to tolerate half-baked ideas and ill-constructed sentences in the beginning. Writing is rewriting.
Perfectionists tend to have unrealistic expectations of themselves and other people. Yet mistakes are a necessary part of learning. We should be kind to ourselves because we all have to start somewhere. Think about how infants learn to walk. They don’t give up the first time they fall down. An infant doesn’t think, “This walking stuff is not for me. I’m no good at it. I’ll crawl through life.” Continue reading “Perfectionism stops you from starting”
Publishers want a book proposal, not a finished manuscript. A publisher’s business model seeks revenue from book sales. But business people see the value of their book in terms of what it will do for them and their companies. Self-publishing has many advantages for the business author. However, in this article, I’m going to tell you about the book proposal: what it is, and why you may not need one.
Some time ago, I rejoined a local Toastmasters club after a hiatus of some twelve years. Toastmasters International is a non-profit educational speakers’ organization offering a rich arena for its members to develop connection, confidence, and clarity, and also have some fun.These are life skills worth cultivating. Membership fees are low, which makes the organization open to almost everyone. Continue reading “Toastmasters value”
“NOW HEAR THIS.” The U.S. Navy uses this phrase to command attention over a ship’s speaker system. Attention is the first order of business whether you’re giving a speech, writing a headline, or attempting to flag down that snooty waiter. Continue reading “Now hear this! Attention first”