Do What You Love!
You Just Might Build Skills that will Come In Handy Later
I recently gave a presentation to a group of college alumnae. A college representative had asked me to speak on November 21, and I’d been honored.
Though I’d had five weeks to prepare, I waited until the last minute (or what seems like the last minute to my old self) to start to prepare. On November 15, I got serious, figured out the structure of my presentation, and began writing my speech. By 17th, I was content with what I’d created and I had the 15-minute introduction memorized. By November 20, a full day before my talk, I felt fully prepared. No nerves, no concerns. I felt confident, satisfied, good.
In less than a week, I was ready. But how was I able to do it so quickly? The answer is I didn’t prepare in only a week. You see, skill-building is stealthy. I hadn’t neglected the seemingly inconsequential effort that I’d put in over the last two and a half years podcasting.
While this presentation was only the second I’d done in almost three years, I’d been preparing all along. Unwittingly, when I started my podcast in 2018, I was practicing my public speaking skills. Eighteen months ago, when I started my Courage Concept podcast series with accompanying videos, I began to hone my presentation skills–speech writing, memorization, stage presence, and delivery–though I didn’t realize it at the time.
Not many people viewed these videos, but I kept on creating them. I wasn’t chasing “likes.” I had a message to share, and adding a video component to my audio podcast felt like a good thing to do. And voila! Eighteen months later, I feel very confident in my speech-making abilities. I’ve even begun to do some videos in French now!
Skill building is a stealthy process; don’t neglect the seemingly insignificant effort!
After many years of not touching my flute, I recently started to play again. This time I knew why. It was because I wanted to. It wasn’t something my mom had suggested (though I’m very grateful that she had recommended I learn an instrument all those years ago). This time picking up the flute was something I had a true desire to do.
I practice daily now (whether I want to or not), because I am self-motivated now and older. During my last lesson, my flute teacher told me that she could definitely hear my progress in just two months. The same concept is at play here as I improve my musical skills.
Is there something that you want to do that you aren’t yet pursuing? Perhaps your intuition guides you to do this thing, but you don’t have a logical reason to follow through. Maybe you’d like to learn an instrument, start a podcast, or publish a blog. Don’t discount random urges to start something new; they might just provide the effort needed to build skills you will need in the future!