So it's officially over.
I spoke on my dream stage and it was everything I hoped it would be.
I felt beautiful. I felt powerful. I felt like the true me came out that day.
But it took A LOT of effing work. Way more than I thought it would be. But it was SOOOO worth it. And it brought out so much from inside of me. I grew. I got clarity. I gained perspective.
And so as with any monumental milestone, the journey there is where the gems are. I am still processing it all, but I'm going to start with some of my big lessons. Some of the greatest hits from the past 2 months, where I literally stopped my life for this talk. I took a major pause on social media, being social and public, writing my book and pretty much everything else aside from the necessities.
I rewrote this thing at least 10 times, and had to recite it at each of the 5 rehearsals with the TEDx team/speakers - many of which I showed up with a different version of my speech because while I was practicing, I was still in the process of honing it down to what I wanted to say - the hardest part of this whole process.
But once I got it - I got itt. It was like it clicked and practice became easier, I became inspired and those I practiced it for were moved. So here is what I learned (so far) from speaking at TEDx:
- Be prepared. I thought I would wing it, like I've done several times before on the stage, but for some reason, I didn't want to do it that way this time. I wanted to be Intentional. Impactful. I wanted to take the audience through a journey and make them feel things and learn things, and feel inspired. I know I am inspirational, but I knew it needed to be EXTRA good. So I wrote it out, and practiced like over 100 times, over and over and over again. I practiced the speech with the powerpoint. I practiced it with mistakes, stopping in the middle during a distraction and continuing on. I practiced with and without the timer. I recorded it and listened to it like it was my favorite song. I practiced it so much so I became the speech.
- Expect to win. This terrified the shit out of me. For a few weeks, I expected to lose. Expected to fail. That of course didn't serve me. It brought my energy down, I couldn't memorize and it would've created a completely different reality than what I wanted. Expect to win. We create our own reality. Why would I focus on what I don't want? I was forced to face my fears and surrender - so what if I messed up? So what if I forgot my lines? I expected to win but at the same time, surrendered. It's a fine line..
- Embrace the labor. It was a labor. That's what it felt like. Painful. Hard. Emotional. Climaxing. Waves. Sometimes I felt depressed. At one point I wanted to give up. But I had to keep reminding myself that it was necessary and to just embrace it. When would I do this again? When would the journey be in this exact way? NEVER. Even if I do a TEDx again, the moment would never be the exact same. So I embraced it for the sake of knowing it would be over and done with. I savored it. I breathed it in. Soaked in all the moments- the scary, the ugly, the breath-taking. I've never done it like this before. Never alllll of the moments.
- Don't stop using your tools. This is probably the most important of all. When I felt low, when I felt the pain, I was tempted to stop meditating. To stop tapping into stillness. But this is probably the MOST IMPORTANT time to do it all. It keeps it all moving.
- Be flexible. Change is constant. We are a process. Always moving. Always evolving. Nothing truly fixed. Like life. We sometimes want it to be fixed. A lot of the time we do. Because change can be scary. But change is the one thing you can be certain of. Embrace it. Flow with it. Ebb and flow like the ocean.
- Surrender. When I was finally mic'd up and I had only a minute before it was my turn, there was a moment my heart felt like it was going to bust through my chest. I took a deep breath and surrendered. I allowed myself to be a vessel. An instrument. When I was up on that stage, I felt so connected. I remember the mic didn't work right off the bat, and somehow the words kept flowing while I held the thought of wondering if I should keep going. But I went with it. And I flowed. I became a channel. Not worrying about the words.. About the speech. I trusted, opened my mouth and my body and it just came through me.
- Receive. When we channel, or become the instrument, we must be open to receive. If we fight it and resist - wanting to stay in control, wanting for it to be perfect or however we want it, we get stuck. Receive. We are just instruments of the Universe. Life just flows through us. It is when we resist that things get stuck - stagnant energy, stagnant emotions, memories, moods, beliefs, disease. Just accept, flow and receive.
This was definitely the most important event of my career so far. I am grateful I was able to do it and that I made it my job so I got the outcome I wanted. I wanted to be proud of it so I could share it with pride and confidence.
Anything in life that is hard is good. Nothing worth doing is easy. It's how we grow.
Do you dream of doing something big? Maybe it's TEDx? Maybe its something else. I'd love to hear about it!