By now you know that I believe there are life lessons all around us if we just keep our hearts and minds open to finding them. This time, I’m going to show you what you can learn from something as simple as appearing in a church talent show.
I mean if you want to be a public speaker, then ask yourself what things could you do that are like that but maybe not exactly that. My friend Adriana Gavazzoni told me that before she started writing fiction she used to think of every legal brief and argument as telling a story. So start looking for those times in your daily life where you could get some experience towards your ultimate goal.
Its well known that I love to sing. I have sung on my podcast videos and in interviews. And people notice my singing in church. So, it wasn’t a surprise when I was asked to participate in this year’s talent show.
Here Is The Video
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The organizer had this brilliant idea of recreating a song from the doo-wop era. She settled on I wonder Why by Dion and the Belmonts.
We started rehearsing, and quickly we realized that getting four busy adults in the same place at the same time to rehearse a song like this is problematic at best.
For the first two weeks I was the only person who was there and practiced every single time we met. Of course, its hard not to get there when the woman in charge is your ride.
At the end of a couple weeks we had decided to tell the MC, master of ceremonies, that we just couldn’t perform the song. We told him we wouldn’t even be good enough for a church talent show unless he wanted us to do it karaoke style. But the woman in charge of our contribution refused to quit.
When Your Goal Seems Impossible That Doesn’t Mean You Need To Quit
It may mean you just need to reevaluate your plan, make some changes, and or ask for help.
Rosalia decided to ask some other people to participate. She chose her son, her room mate, and me plus she decided to sing herself. She didn’t want to sing. In addition to our song she was also involved in an elaborate Mario brothers video game act featuring many of the small kids in our congregation.
So, the four of us practiced together. It wasn’t going as well as we had hoped. But we kept after it. One thing that helped is I agreed to sing a different part.
Don’t Be Afraid To Stretch Yourself
I had chosen the second biggest part fearing my voice wasn’t high enough and that I might not be able to remember all the verses.
However, the only way the song worked is because I decided that heck I could sing the bigger part that required more of my voice. I could also sing some of it a little differently than it was originally sung in the videos we watched.
As we rehearsed we even had to have different members sing parts that weren’t assigned to them. And I had to be confident enough in my memory to sing one part with the two female singers going off of my cue.
Don’t Let Surprises Scare You
On the night of the performance there were some mix ups with the people running the theatre we were using. Just before we were scheduled to go on the microphones disappeared. As we walked up on the stage my three partners were scared.
I did my best to encourage them. I knew that we had practiced and were ready to perform the song to the enjoyment of our audience. I knew we wouldn’t be perfect, but then I also knew the guys who originally sang it probably never were either.
I told my partners, this is no big thing. Just do your best to sing louder and project into the audience. They were still hesitant.
I found out later that Rosalia’s son Aaron had never performed anything on a stage before.
I wish I had known that. I would have been more gentle with him.
He had the job of starting off the song. I’m ashamed to admit that I was harsh with him.
My exact words were if you don’t just sing I’m going to take you back behind the stage and whip your ass.
I’m not proud of that. However, I am proud of what I said to the audience.
Realizing that we didn’t have a mike, I announced to the audience that we were performing a doo-wop song from the 50s. I explained that in those days it would be four guys hanging out on the stoop or street corner harmonizing and that not having a microphone was perfect because that is how it used to be done.
My friend Casandra, who recorded the video, said she was really impressed with my apparent calm and ability to make such a speech with no preparation or expectation that there would be problems.
I told her, well I did grow up a carney. My dad always told me to aspire to be a show man. And it just seemed right to make that announcement and reassure my partners.
What I Didn’t Know
Funny thing, is half way through the song a stage hand walked out and placed a mike in front of us. I had no way to know this. And there was no way for them to tell me without risking throwing off the whole song. I sang as if we didn’t have anything boosting our sound.
Deciding To Succeed
I myself hadn’t been on a stage in years. The last time would have been in choir when I was in junior high school over 35 years ago.
When I walked up to the stage, my attitude was this is going to go great. I was thinking we have rehearsed to the point that we all know our parts. We have made it through the song many times in rehearsal. So, why wouldn’t we be able to do the same thing on stage.
I also reminded myself that this is not Madison Square Garden or even the Grand Ole Opry. I thought this is a church talent show with an audience full of people who want us to be good.
And most importantly of all I know that just doing something regardless of how good or bad it turns out is an accomplishment. Just being there in the moment ready to sing and have fun was a win. The applause was just a big bonus.
I almost forgot the real lesson here. Some of you know that I see my future as a motivational speaker. I have yet to appear on stage anywhere. I am sure that I will feel some fear when that day comes. But until then there will be opportunities to take some small steps towards that big goal.
Just like starting to go to church on a regular basis exposed me to crowds and helped prepare me for my trip to New York City this talent show appearance has helped me prepare for that first speaking engagement.
I have the knowledge that I can and will overcome my fears. Heck I sang the whole song knowing or at least thinking there was no microphone. I feel so much more confident that I will be able to stand on a stage soon and share my story to inspire and motivate others.
My First Public Talk
I am proud to announce that I will be giving my first public talk on May 20th at an event called
It is being hosted by my good friend Joe,aka Super Joe Pardo
I appeared on his show Last year, and he was good enough to invite me to come and speak to a room full of fellow dreamers.
Its a long way to New Jersey, but I feel like this audience is made up of people like me who need some encouragement. I told Joe I feel like these are my people. And I fully expect to make a lot of new friends at the event and the mixer the night before.
I will be giving a talk entitled Just press publish, don’t let fear keep you from your destiny. I think that’s something I know a little about? I hope to see some of you there.
If you want more information, just go to https://superjoepardo.com/dreamcon
I should mention that Joe wants as many people as possible to be able to participate and get the benefits from his event. So, this first annual conference for dreamers will only be $49.95 per person until April 30th. Starting on May 1st the price goes up to $64.95. You will get a whole day of talented speakers who will inspire, motivate, educate, and entertain.
What Scares You?
I know many of you have big goals of your own. Some of you still haven’t taken that first step. Others of you have started but you have gotten stuck. Often, the problem is fear.
It could be fear of failure or fear of looking silly. It could be fear of upsetting your friends or disappointing your family. It could be that you have made a long list of things you will have to do to accomplish your goal and over whelmed yourself with the details. It could even be the fear of how success would change you or your life. Regardless of why you are scare, the only way forward is to take that next step.
What Small Step Can You Take?
I know you have thought about and dreamed about your big goal. You have some ideas of things you will need to learn or do to get there. What is one small thing you could do today that will prepare you for this? What small steps have you already taken?
These small victories prepare us for taking bigger and bigger risks. They also give us a store house of positive memories to invoke when things get really scary.
Please Share With Me
I have benefited so much from many great online friends who have encouraged me over the years. I am always looking for ways to show my gratitude by helping others.
So, I want you to tell me your big goal, one step you have taken or will take, and how it makes you feel.
You can post it in the comments, or you can email me privately through the contact form.
I look forward to hearing from you. I can’t wait to see my friends and fans taking those small steps and moving forward on their paths.
I do appreciate your love and support. Knowing you still enjoy reading my posts and that you get something worthwhile out of them really keeps me going during my own tough times.
So, until next time thank you, God bless you, and take care out there. Max