Friday, December 7, 2012

"No arms, no legs, no worries!" - an inspiring story.

Here’s an amazing story that I heard about today for the first time. It’s about a man called Nick Vujicic, who was born with no arms and practically no legs. He struggled to accept this and was depressed at a young age, but learned not only to cope, but to achieve great things. So, this is an inspiring story of determination and positive attitude that I’m eager to share, but I’m also posting it here because you can see some great public speaking skills at play.
Nick connects with his audiences masterfully and obviously gets his message across effectively, but how does he do it?  For me, before any sort of speaking or presenting skills he’s displaying, he’s nailed these fundamental requirements for a speech that lasts a lifetime in people’s memories:
Being honest about who he is, what he thinks, how he feels and about the fact that he’s not perfect. In other words, he’s showing that he’s human – the same as his audience.
99% of people want to be inspired. They want to hear about the things that can be done. Possibilities excite people.
Using everyday language. Language he (and his audience) is comfortable with. It’s easier to connect with people when they can see you’re being yourself.
His facial expressions, gestures and energy levels convey just as much as (if not more than) his words. You can see that he really believes in what he’s saying.
He clearly wants to make a difference for the people who are listening to him. He’s openly sharing things that will make things better for them.
And I don’t mean “he’s hilarious” because that’s not always what’s needed (though it helps sometimes!). What I mean is that he’s not taking himself, or life, too seriously. They say that “laughter is the shortest distance between 2 people” and this clearly connect with his audience.
So, aside from learning a few helpful skills, if you can nail most of the above in your speech, then it will be memorable and impactful.  Now, please enjoy the video:
Here are a couple of quotes that I’ll be remembering for a long time to come.
00:57 secs  “And you keep on concentrating on the things that you wish you had or the things that you wish you didn’t have … and you sort of forget what you DO have”
03:40 “…to be thankful, dream big and never give up”