Essentially a motivational speaker is a storyteller,
And sharing memorable high-impact tales are relevant to any audience. I commissioned this PSA graphic. It's particularly relevant to me as I'm a Fellow of The Professional Speaking Association and The National President in 2014. The PSA mnemonic is to remind you to:
P make a point,
S tell a story,
A create an action point.
Let PSA help you next time you need to build a presentation.
I tell a powerful story about our daughter, Catriona aka Cat. When she was seven years old Cat. was a darling child however, she was shy and lacking in self-esteem compared to her outgoing and exuberant big brother. She preferred to hold my hand, my skirt - even my coat tails rather than run off on her own. As a parent you want to empower your children don't you? So as a independent and confident woman, I was at a loss to know what to do about young Cat.
What would you have done?
I decided to meet a good friend for coffee and ask her advice. She said something along these lines, "It must be hard for Catriona living in the shadow of a brother who seems to have it all - Mr. Popular, gifted on the computer and all round sportsman, a dad who runs his own business and jets off around the world at a whim and then... having you for a mother... well..." and her voice tailed off.
I swallowed hard; slightly taken aback by her forthright response and replied, "OK that withstanding, what do you suggest we do?" "Help Cat. to find her own place. Encourage her to pursue her passion. And when she finds whatever that may be, back off. Allow her to shine in her own glory..." was the retort. Well there's no point is asking for advice and not acting on it, so a couple months later on Cat's 8th birthday we organised a riding party at the local stable.
Spin forward 10 years. Cat had a place at Keele University. Yet she decided to follow her heart and explore Australia instead. Where had my cling-on child gone? She had evolved into the most competent and confident of young women. Why? Because with improved self-esteem and once she found her passion, she was unstoppable. "You're a star, you can do whatever you set your heart on," we told her daily until she was ready to conquer the world and she felt:
- confident...with her spirit questing...
What's the point?
A 'Klingon' is a fictional warrior in Star Trek. Our 'cling-on' child battled like a warrior to defeat self-doubt. She flourished because we focused on the characteristics that would build her confidence. We talked it into existence and she made it happen. We believed in her and kept praising her character. She embraced her fears and did it anyway... what she had seen as frightening, she grew into an adventure.
And the action?
What qualities do you admire? Do you look for them in others? Can you build up your friends, family and colleagues? My mother used to say, "Don't find fault in others - you'll probably find you have the same faults. Look for the good," she extolled. When my super client Sharon Sanderson, dubbed me Captain Positive, little did she know the impact her words would have. She has been instrumental in me developing a positive outlook. I live up to her expectations. Isn't such a blessing that when you help others, you end up helping yourself?
- Imagine someone playing the piano...
- Is it an upright?
- A baby grand?
- How old is the pianist?
- Male or female?
- What's the music?
- How is the pianist dressed?
Do you see things differently?
PS More on Eilidh the speaker