When I used to travel and speak — oh, the good ole’ days! — I’d go against protocol about how to finish a keynote or presentation.
Toastmasters, keep breathing.
A lot of professional speakers do NOT thank their audience at the end. Why? Because the audience should feel thankful for the gift of the speaker’s talk.
I know. I didn’t like that thinking either. Sounds a touch douche-y and precious.
My last words when public speaking are always the same: “Thank you for being so nice to me.”
Even writing those words — thank you for being so nice to me — I feel tremendous sadness and Joy all at the same time.
The sadness is rooted in the times we’re living in.
The Joy and gratitude are for all the beautiful people (like you) who’ve been so kind, thoughtful, brave, generous, authentic, vulnerable and sweet over the years.
If this sounds like a swan song, close but no cigar. Yet I am taking a break from One-Minute Story Tips… for the summer, which in Canada means two weeks of warm weather. Joking!
The advice I give to “my” writers, authors, storytellers and speakers (i.e., daredevil superstar lighthouses I feel mama bear about) is timeless and consistent.
- Replenish your well of creativity regularly
- Nourish yourself with Joy, Peace and Belonging
- Find your “birds of a feather” — people who cherish and respect you (Don’t have nice people in your life? Keep looking. They’ll find you. Promise. And cut abuse and disrespect out of your life. I am.)
Despite my excellent, excellent advice-giving to MILLIONS (billions maybe) I’m discovering that we’re living in not-so-nice times.
Yes, I’m all for focusing on the positive. And I’m also all for treating one another with patience, respect, curiosity, tolerance and kindness.
See where I’m going?
There’s such polarity in the world right now that I’m finding it harder and harder to authentically say “Thank you for being so nice to me.” Instead I feel a lot of… oh! Let’s say profanity, hurt, resentment and/or anger.
I feel tired. How about you?
My lighthouse lens (like that?) is dirty and needs a good deep cleaning. Why? So I can once again see through a frame that focuses on everything I value: Joy, Peace, Belonging and Love.
I’ll say Freedom and Fun too.
So with all those good-vibe goodies in mind, I wish you absolute deliciousness in your life this summer and always.
On my end, I am flowing inward and getting quiet (me?!) so I can rebuild my faith in humanity and me. Note: I’ve never lost faith in you. Ever. You got this.
When September comes I plan on feeling like a shiny and tall lighthouse who’s lost her Covid curves (ba-haha) and cancelled her Netflix (the horror!).
What can you let go of and let in? Whatever sources of passion, adventure, gifts and greatness you have in mind, go forth, sweet storyteller.
My intention for you and me? Let’s reclaim our creativity, recapture some long-lost dreams, heal deep wounds, and embark on an exciting new life.
Do I care about the “how”? Nope.
Making a positive intention gets the ball rolling, especially when you clear your calendar for self-care and self-healing.
Autumn is a new season. Lighthouse Storytelling will have a new light to shine. (Social media, get ready! Goodness.) And I hope I find you still here, grounded and changed too.
Rest this summer.
Turn off the doom news.
Follow your fascinations.
Imagine a positive future for all of us, each and every one.
And don’t run from your inner darkness and shadow — turn on that not-so-little Light of yours.
People like you light up a room (yes, even inside a Zoom doom room or trapped indoors at your in-laws).
You help us all lean in and grow forward through your kindness and your Light.
Be brave and courageous in your creativity and your creations.
A new world emerges — let our higher selves illuminate the way forward.
Tons of love from Story Land to you now and always.
See you when the leaves start falling and life has shown us that Chicken Little lied: the sky is still blue and above us.
♥ Shannon ♥
xox p.s. Thank you for being so nice to me.