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Month: June 2020

The spotlight shock!

Is terrifying.

When you are under it you can’t even see the first row! Essentially facing blankness. Being hyper-aware that every word, twitch and look is being judged.

The modern spotlight has shifted to our devices. As you go live, hit record or click broadcast. Your stage-fear erupts, heartbeats fasten, breathing becomes shallow, inner critic starts rumbling and your mind is going puff!

Still, you can’t see the audience. At most, you can watch yourself!

It’s as if you are speaking to a mirror, but feel that your world is watching you! (it is!)

Instead of shying away, embrace it. It’s OK to goof up, technology is fickle and we get it.

Can’t wait to hear what you have to say.

Go, go, go!

You are lost in the echo.

Showing up and regurgitating quotes, facts, stories, speeches and anecdotes is not what you are here for.

The audience already knows it or they can look it up at their convenience.

Instead, bring passion, energy and enthusiasm to the stage.

Share your view, make space for the muse to communicate through you or dig deeper within and articulate the stream of your thoughts.

Don’t be an echo, push your voice forward.

Whom did you contribute to today?

Contribution to others gives you a true sense of your worth.

There are infinite ways to contribute, maybe you are contributing already in ways known and unknown to you.

Now is a good time to acknowledge them. To relook at what you have been up to.

I hope you are busy contributing to others in ways that are meaningful, useful and worthwhile to them.

If not, today is a good day to begin.

3 crutches of a speaker.

The average speaker has crutches: borrowed quotes, blunt metaphors and boring stories.

It lacks vividness, precision and power.

Because the quotes, stories and metaphors are worn out, the grammar is careless and speech is verbose.

Instead of being lazy and careless. Why not articulate your deliberate thoughts, create new and precise metaphors and dig deeper for refreshing stories.

It’s worth everyone’s time to remove the extra padding of words. Pound the script to ensure every word is purposeful.

Mirror talkers

Going live, zoom calls and presenting digitally is a lot like talking with yourself in a mirror.

There is less or no stage freight because the physical stage is non-existent and your machine is too familiar to intimidate you.

So, go ahead look squarely at yourself and share with us what you always intended. We can’t wait to hear what you have to share!

To take a leap and pause.

In talks long and short, large and small I force myself to pause purposefully and just, just look into peoples eyes and allow them to emote back, for them to nod slowly and convey to me that they understand, to allow them (and myself) to catch a breath… and another…and another. However, That space between people where silence exists is terrifying. I know my ideas are sinking in them still, I feel I’m am sinking in the silence.

And, I run my mouth to fill the time with whatever I can, earlier it was a series of ahh, err, uhm and now I’ve learnt to cover it up with jargons, globe talk or anything that will lead to nowhere in particular.

Pausing as you practice in private is easy, pausing as you are speaking in public is a little bit like letting go your next few words, sucking all the air in the room and wishing that your version of hell won’t break loose.

To pause takes guts, grounding and self-love. I still tap my collarbone and affirm repeatedly ‘All is well!’ as I prepare.

When in public, The only way forward is to trust the audiences’ generosity.

Crystallising my thoughts

Filling the gaps in my thinking! That’s what these daily blogs are about.

They are about completing my thought flow. About getting myself to think them through and bring logical conclusions, plunging the missing links and articulating it.

They stack up. Day after day. Blog after blog. A chronicle of my crystallised thoughts.

Ps: As I look back upon the 478 blogs I’ve published, I notice the transformation I’ve undergone, the thoughts I’ve stuck with and those that I’ve let go, the ones that served me and the rest.

A city’s name is its emotion.

It’s futile to change the name of the cities. It doesn’t add value to the majority of its population, takes a lot of money, energy and unlearning.

Beyond that, it takes a generation (20 years) for it to barely trickle down to the local tongue.

As an individual’s geography is increasingly losing its relevance, renaming a city is a futile exercise.

One may change the name, but they are not merely names, they are emotions.

Instead focus on bettering things, by making better things.

Sounding smart

In my mind, I’m either on a stage, at a dinner table or imagining an interaction.

In all of these cases, I’m practising to sound smart. So I can be accepted, appreciated and admired.

It’s a weird habit. And I thought it was just I who battled with it.

I spent hours crafting smart, quotable liners in many situations with triads and a touch of glamour! It was a fulfilling thought-exercise because there was always a feeling of significance at the end.

The chattering isn’t going anywhere, I have begun to channelise it better.

I still have this challenge. This blog is a chronicle of such thought-journeys.