Your Turn Challenge Day 1: We Teach What We Need to Learn

Hello dear readers... Do you know who Seth Godin is?  I hope you do. He is a voice of clarity and insight in the loud, loud world of marketing. He pushes all of us to do better work - to push beyond the junk that too often crowds this internet landscape - and do something that matters. And this week, he has thrown out a challenge that I have accepted.

It's called the #YourTurnChallenge... and the idea is to "ship" something each day for 7 days.  Why?  Because too often fear gets in the way, and keeps us from really realizing what we are fully capable of. And that is surely true for me, so I said YES.

Which means that each day this week you'll get a short post by me - which is about 6 more than I typically post! Yikes. I hope you'll indulge me this week as I "ship" one post to you each day (yay, more email!); but more importantly, I hope you'll find these ideas of value.

This right here?  This is the email that gives you permission to hold me accountable if I don't ship something each and every day, starting Monday January 19th through Sunday January 25th. Whew!



Your Turn Challenge, Day 1 - We Teach What We Need to Learn

by Sally Koering Zimney

I host a podcast/blog called This Moved Me about the art of public speaking. As a presentation coach and consultant, I help people bring their voices more authentically and courageously out into the world because I believe that a good talk can truly move this world of ours.

A few weeks ago I was interviewing storyteller and social entrepreneur Michael Margolis about his work, and he said, "We teach what we need to learn."

I teach people how to tell their stories and move their audience, and I do so with ease and with care and with clarity; yet telling my own stories can sometimes make my heart pound like a bumbling amateur again. It's humbling and confidence-shaking. Which is why it's so lovely sitting in the safe role of coach, basking in the ease and power of commenting rather than creating. The wise Mr. Margolis was right: We teach what we need to learn.

When I work with speakers, I'm often helping them de-mystify all the ideas that we have in our heads about how a speaker SHOULD speak. Hardly any ideas that we learned in high school's Speaking101 class are helpful in my work. No, instead we are doing personal work; relational work; we're talking about fear and courage and intention. It's important work about showing up and breathing and sharing who we are. Speaking well is powered by courage.

And it struck me that this is not so different, this #YourTurnChallenge. I convince speakers that it is indeed their turn. But have I convinced myself?  I still need to learn what I am teaching.

And so, this week I am stepping into the role of courageous student again. Day 1's assignment: Show up. Breathe. Share who I am. SHIP. That's all any of us have to do.


photo credit: ToGa Wanderings via photopin cc