“It usually takes more than three weeks to prepare a good impromptu speech.” ~ Mark Twain
One evening, I watched an interview with Sage Kotsenburg, Gold Medal winner of the slope-style snowboarding event in the Winter Olympics. At one point, he said “I had no clue what I was going to do, even the day of the semis and the finals. I like changing it up a lot. I like just kind of making things different.”
I thought, “Wow, he thought up all those incredible moves on the spot!” Upon further reflection, though, I realized what Sage was really saying. As a student of speaking, I know that no one ever stands up and has brilliant thoughts simply flow out. Mark Twain, with his words above, brilliantly captured the essence of this idea.
The ability to eloquently share your thoughts, especially in impromptu situations, requires practice, evaluation, and more practice. This is the only way you can reach the point where you don’t need to think about what you’re going to say, because you are in the moment, focused on your audience [whether there are one or one hundred people in front of you].
I believe that is what Sage Kotsenburg meant in his interview. There is no way he tried brand new routines, never-before practiced, on the biggest stage in the world, with Olympic Gold on the line. I’m convinced he had practiced his routines, or elements of them, for years. This rehearsal gave him the confidence to employ these ‘new’ moves on-the-spot.
If you want the ability to “change it up a lot” or “make things different” in pressure situations, practice, evaluate and practice again. Only then will you be able to shine when your gold medal moment presents itself.
EDUCATIONAL RESOURCE OF THE WEEK
If you sell anything – product, service or idea – this book is for you. Author Jeff Bloomfield, a highly successful sales professional and speaker, teaches you why traditional sales processes are ineffective, and how to capitalize on brain research that teaches you how and why people buy.
Individuals buy from people they trust. They trust people they like, and they like people they connect to. Mr. Bloomfield believes that storytelling is the best way for salespeople—and all of us—to immediately connect to a customer’s feelings of trust and liking. This book proves why.
For more information, and to purchase, click here.
© 2014 – 2015, Michael Davis. All rights reserved.