Just Show Up

travel tips

Woody Allen is quoted as saying  80% of success is showing up. He was referring to people who wanted to accomplish something  such as write a novel, a screenplay, etc. His argument was, that if they actually did the thing, they would more than half way towards something good happening.

 

80% of success is showing up.

This statement doesn’t just apply to lofty goals, yet also to those small everyday successes. Just show up.

  • If I show up to the gym, I will do SOME exercise. 
  • If I show up to that after work networking event, I’m likely to meet at least ONE person beneficial to my career.
  • If I show up to the neighborhood barbecue, I might meet a neighbor that I had no idea buys whatever it is I sell.
  • If I show up to a new Bible study group or book club, I might meet a new acquaintance or even friend. (So hard to do in adulthood.)

Just show up. You never know what positive outcome might occur. You probably won’t regret doing it, but most likely you’ll regret NOT doing it.

A Five Step Formula for Practicing Impromptu Speaking

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Do you believe you can prepare for impromptu speaking? Off-the-cuff speaking opportunities present themselves to us every day in the form of job interviews, staff meetings, client interactions, etc.

As a member of Toastmasters International, I recently discovered their five step formula for learning how to perform better in whatever impromptu speaking situation might come your way.

Listen

A good response is dependent on an attentive attitude and careful listening can provide part of your response. If you agree, your reply will reflect your attention by reinforcing the other person’s words. If you disagree, you can tactfully amend or correct the original statement.

Be careful not to interject your own ideas before the other person has finished. Instead, focus on what is being said, rather than what YOU are going to say next. The advantages are:

  • People are more likely to respect and listen to your ideas when you listen to them
  • You’ll be able to incorporate some of what you’ve heard into your reply
  • You’ll improve your chances of commenting directly on what you’ve heard so you can give an on-target response

Pause

Pausing before you speak allows you to refresh your thoughts and formulate an answer. A pause can add drama, allow the audience to absorb your message, or give them the opportunity to respond to humor.

Confirm

Repeating or confirming the question out loud provides you with a clearer idea of how to respond and will help you verify the topic in case you misunderstood the question.

Tell

Be enthusiastic but stay focused and on point. Don’t give in to the urge to analyze EVERY aspect of the topic.

End

Once you have said what you want to say, don’t belabor the point. Bring your comments to a close.

A Few Other Tips:

  • Be confident. Remind yourself that pausing is okay and restating the question will help you steady your response.
  • Be brief. It is easy to stray off topic and begin repeating statements, adding new points or, backtracking. Stick to your main points.
  • Be sincere. Trying to be inventive when you don’t know the answer to a question is risky. It is better that you admit if you don’t know how to respond.

Being able to respond spontaneously is an excellent mental habit to cultivate. It takes time and effort to develop. Practice the basics and you too will feel confident when those impromptu speaking opportunities present themselves.

Source: Toastmasters International

Embrace The Chalazae

Is there something in your life you continue to do simply because you’ve always done it that way?

Every time I crack an egg, I remove the white ropey substance attached to the yolk. Until recently, I had no idea what that suff was, but I’ve removed it all my life. And so has my mother, my grandmother, and my great-grandmother.

Four generations of women have done something without even knowing WHY they were doing it. Last week, I decided to research what that substance was. Its called chalazae (kuh-LAY-zee). It anchors the yolk in place in the center of the egg white. It is not a beginning embryo.  Chalazae does not interfere with the cooking or beating of the egg and does not need to be removed. (Although some cooks like to strain them from stirred custard.)

Side note: the more prominent the chalazae, the fresher the egg.

Have I stopped this unnecessary step of removing the chalazae? Not entirely, but I’m working on it. It’s hard to break a 35-year-old habit.

Finish Your Opportunities

During the last Olympic Games, I heard an interview with the coach of the U.S. women’s soccer team. She said something that caught my attention. She said, the winner of the final game between Japan and the U.S., would be the team that “finished the most opportunities.”

That struck me as brilliant. Think about it…the winner would be the one who FINISHED the most opportunities. Not the one who TRIED for the most opportunities, but finished them.

It got me thinking about how many times I have been presented with an opportunity and either made a halfhearted attempt at it, or passed on it entirely. That simple statement gave me a renewed vigor to grab every opportunity I can and approach it with the attitude that I will see it through to the end. And, that I will do so with every ounce of my being.

How about you? What opportunities are you going finish?

Happiness is a Choice. Choose Wisely.

I just had an awesome experience at McDonald’s (don’t judge me) that made me smile and realize that I have NO earthly reason NOT to be happy. Ever!

As I drove through to pick up my order, the young woman in the window greeted me, “Hello Miss Diet Coke. You have a blessed day and come back and see us.” She was so cheerful and genuinely happy in that moment, that I had no choice but to feel blessed.

I can say with almost 100% certainty, that my life, for the most part, is easier than hers. I have a good job, home, husband, kids, blah, blah, blah. Yet, this girl, was very happy doing what she was doing, at that particular moment. The impact her greeting had on me, lasted the rest of the day! Imagine how that kind of happiness could spread if we all practiced it just a little bit more than we do.

Lesson learned – take time to live in the moment and be happy now!

Thank you Miss McDonald’s. You have a blessed day too!