This is my second installment considering presentations as similar to tires: Both can become over-inflated or under-inflated, with negative results. My first post addressed KISS as an example of over-inflation when presenting or speaking. I see this as a misguided attitude.
Forgetting the value of one is also a misguided attitude for speakers. The Phantom of the Opera is the longest running show on Broadway, currently at 13,370 performances and counting. One actor performed the same role more than 9,000 times. Impressive, but this means very little to the audience seeing the show for the first time.
An actor who is intimately familiar with the role, or a presenter who is as familiar with his/her materials, but performs each time as if it is the first knows the value of one. But actors and presenters who convince themselves the audience should be in awe of their performance simply for who they are have forgotten the value of one. This is a misguided, over-inflated attitude.
When we present or speak, are we allowing this misguided attitude to creep in? One way I challenge myself to correct over-inflation when presenting is to remember what Fredrick L. Collins said: “There are two types of people, those who come into a room and say, ‘Well here I am,' and those who come into a room and say, ‘Ah, there you are.'" Forgetting the value of one usually happens as I slip into the mindset of entering a room, or stepping on stage, and thinking, “Well here I am." But when I dare to genuinely turn my thoughts outward to others (“Ah, there you are") I find that I speak the information as if it’s the first time, remembering the value of one.
Might I also remind us to slow down — breathe — when leaving contact info on a voice message? It may be the 9,000th time for you but opening night for the person listening.
In my third post, we will look at the Improv Myth as another misguided attitude to avoid when presenting.
About the Author
Shawn Ritchey is an educator and storyteller who finds great joy in breathing life into each presentation in which he plays a part. The imagery of breathing life is significant as he spent nearly three decades in emergency services as an EMT. Additionally, Shawn spent over 15 years in the wellness industry as a licensed massage therapist, and on individual projects as a safety and health consultant.
As an educator, Shawn specializes in safety and wellness subjects where he blends his EMT and massage therapy experience with his professional theater background to provide energized education you’ll remember. As a corporate storyteller, Shawn can partner with your organization to either reinforce important messages you already have, or provide presentations that will both equip and inspire. As an inspirational storyteller, Shawn offers seasonal or theme-based monologues that will entertain and even encourage viewers to action.
Shawn’s commitment, passion and skillset equip and inspire others to remember what they have learned so a life — theirs or someone else’s — can be improved, made well or kept safe. Contact Shawn directly at (206) 355-9926
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