Monday, August 29, 2016

My experience with #TheGoal30

When I read about #TheGoal30 on No Thanks to Cake, I thought it sounded like a great way to step up my game on a few goals. I was really looking forward to making my own list, at least until I started the list.


The first few felt fun. Then I started to struggle to think of non-scale goals. Then I powered through the list, but when I looked at it, I just felt exhausted, not motivated. I'm going with my instinct to just forget it, at least for now.

I'm going through a rough patch, and maybe now is not the time for something like this. My heart wouldn't be in it. I'm starting to feel burned out on self-improvement projects.

I've decided to focus on one goal for September: Extreme Self-Care. I want to get better sleep, work my Weight Watchers plan, and get as much time in the outdoors as possible. Plus rest and get to water. Of course I'll do other things, like work and exercise and spend time with family and friends. 

This challenge was about self-care all along, so I guess I'm going with the spirit of it, even if it doesn't look as good on Instagram.

Sunday, August 07, 2016

7 Tips for Your First TED Talk

In March, I gave my first (and so far only) TED talk at TEDx WayPublicLibrary

I think the talk went pretty well, but I finally got a chance to see the video of my talk, and I have a few tips, in hindsight, that I'd like to share so that your first TED talk is even better.

  1. Wear color. The TEDx background is black. If you wear a black dress like I did, you might look like a floating head and hands. 
  2. Wear something with large pockets. My dress had none, which meant I had to hold the microphone pack in my hand. 
  3. Convince the organizers to light and shoot video from above, rather than below. I don't think the angle in my video was the most flattering -- who looks best shot from under their chin? And the lighting made some weird shadows.
  4. S-l-o-w D-o-w-n. Both my movements and speech were a little too hurried, especially at first. I didn't realize how fast I was talking.
  5. Make the audience laugh early in the talk. I told a joke early on, and it helped me to feel at ease and more connected with the people listening.
  6. Outline your talk ahead of time, but don't script it word-for-word. I think this is one place where I succeeded. I had planned out the points that I wanted to hit and really studied those. I used the images on my slides as a way to remind me of those points. This allowed me to relax and tell my story without the fear that I would ramble on and miss something important.
  7. Be vulnerable. I told a story that was, and is, very painful to me. I had a lot of people tell me that they identified with it and had their own similar experiences. If I had kept things abstract instead of making them personal, I don't think I would have had the same response.

The video of my talk is embedded below. See the other speakers' videos in the TEDx WayPublicLibrary playlist.

"Count your calories, work out when you can, and try to be good to yourself. All the rest is bulls**t." -- Jillian Michaels at BlogHer '07