Last week over 900 entrepreneurs and their teams gathered to hear business thought leaders’ new ideas on leadership, business growth, the digital revolution and more.
Although not a keynote speaker, I had a 15-minute spot on The Power of Knowing and Growing Yourself. The slides for my presentation had been submitted to the organizers the week before. My timing was practiced and precise. I had even bought a new outfit for the event.
I was ready!
Of course, I wanted to be (and look) smart and prepared. This was the biggest audience I had ever addressed live. My hope was to build the audience for the blog and drive sales of my book – Live Large: The Achiever’s Guide to What’s Next.
On the eve of my big moment, one of my colleagues challenged me to talk about something I had discussed with my colleagues the day before.
I knew he was right and yet…
There were people I wanted to impress.
It was too late to change the slides.
I didn’t want to look unprepared.
I wanted to show off my knowledge.
Questions and insecurities flooded my mind. I could think of a dozen reasons to stick with my script as planned.
But something was still nagging at me. I knew I had to get crystal clear on my intentions and my outcome.
Here’s what I realized:
I didn’t really want to work with the people I thought I was trying to impress, because their values didn’t align with my own.
My real outcome was to help people understand that there are times when playing it safe can be riskiest move of all.
If that was my message, I had to live it myself. Isn’t that what Living Large is all about?
So I told a different story from what I had planned. I didn’t play it safe.
Was I nervous? Yes, but the loud applause and my cheering colleagues let me know I had made the right decision.
Where are you playing it safe? Ask yourself what is your real intention and does playing it safe truly serve that intention.
Once you are clear, I invite you to make the brave choice and Live Large.