Let it Rip-The Power of Unpolished

MicrophonesI’m drawn to people who step on stage and share what scares the hell out of them.  I enjoy watching the bloopers more than the polished, perfected performance.  Not so I can feel superior, but so I can be inspired.

When I see people at their most vulnerable, I feel truly connected. We are all human. We cry. We love. We leap. We fall. We yearn.

When was the last time you stepped out with nothing prepared to face what ranks as the number one fear-public speaking?

I never thought I was afraid of public speaking.  I’ve facilitated workshops, taught classes, done lectures.  I liked being the center of people’s attention, though I often foresaw myself letting them down, wasting their time, or not making sense. I fought those fears with grueling preparation. I memorized. I practiced. I ate what I wanted to say for dinner. I dreamed about it at night.

But the more polished and prepared I was, the less I connected with my audience.  My greatest fears became a reality.  They were bored.  They were restless.  They left wanting more.  So did I.

The truth is the most powerful presentations I have given are those that I really didn’t prepare all that much for.  In one case, I tore up my notes and stepped up with little idea of what I was about to say.  I was terrified. But I set my intention for everyone to feel better after the presentation than they did before it (including me).  Without my script, I tuned into the moment.  I dove into the space between each breath.  I let go of managing my appearance and dove into that raw place, sharing what I might have only discussed with a close friend. My heart began to open and beat with new energy and vibrancy.  It received.  It remembered. It connected.

Things got interesting. I found that when I dropped my mask, others did too. We sidestepped small talk and talked about what mattered. I was liberated, embracing the energetic buzz of possibility.

That’s what I want to bring to the stage in every area of my life.  I’m realizing that the power in writing, speaking, creating a video, or otherwise engaging in conversation is not about finding the perfect words, but rather about tapping into an energy-live, vibrant, imperfect, beautiful.

Our greatest opportunity is to create a bridge so this energy can travel from one to another in a way that soothes, energizes, and inspires.

What can you do today to forget about polished and just let ‘er rip?  Move into your fear.  There is energy and electricity there.  For you.  For me.  For all of us.

I dare you.

Image Credit:  Håkan Dahlström

About Diane Bolden

Diane Bolden is passionate about helping people actualize their brilliance in a way that inspires others to do the same. In addition to being the author of The Pinocchio Principle ~ Becoming the Leader You Were Born to Be, Diane is an executive coach, speaker, yoga lover and mother of three. Join Diane On the Road to Real, visit her Synchronistically Speaking blog, follow her on Twitter;, or visit her YouTube channel for more.

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