TEDxMiami

Is awesome!

They had their live streaming event of Global TED from Edinburgh, Scotland tonight at The Stage in the Miami Design District. The event is free, began at 6pm and runs till 10pm. Go, get yourself there, it was jam packed. It is a cool funky bar with a laid-back vibe. There also is a food truck out back.

The event had over 1,000 people RSVP, the largest they ever had. And the crowd is young, old, black, white and green. I loved one tweet I read, “this crowd is amazing, the average IQ here has to be 135, I love it.”

My husband Robert rocked it on stage getting kudos from the curators, as the go to man for volunteer opportunities. Robert is the Director of Volunteers and he leads their regular meetings. He also knows how to work the crowd on stage, plugging their massage person and food truck choices. I had to leave as I have work to do for tomorrow, otherwise I would have mingled, drank, and shared innovative ideas with new friends. Can’t wait to hear all the gossip when he gets home!

A Poem

Fade in

A girl goes to tragic films

where her cries

get lost in a larger

more general lamentation

She considers the rightness

and wrongness of her man

in a dark movie theater

alone

After every break-up

a depressing

afternoon movie

to mute her voice, his voice

“Remember this doesn’t

change anything” he says

after he enters

deep inside

French, Spanish

or Italian

subtitles use

more of her brain power

She focus’ on actors’ faces

blushing sky, exotic

scenery, snappy

dialogue, quick comebacks

Tears drop

in buttered popcorn

she clutches close

to breast

She forgets his name

if only for two hours

and tenses as she exits

into afternoon sun

Fade out

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

TEDx prep

After I learned I got into TEDx and I was not going to let myself back out, I had to prepare. Doing this was just as much a growing edge for me as the actual talk itself.  TEDx talks are video taped and then placed on the TEDx website and YouTube. Kind of like the mirror thing, I hate looking at myself on video, in fact, I didn’t look, never have. Until TEDx.

So I decided to go all out, dig in and watch myself on video talking. I was videoed a few years ago for an award I won. A three minute clip of my interview was shown at the gala luncheon; I pulled out the DVD and watched. I didn’t like anything about what I viewed. I decided my TEDx prep process would be to desensitize myself to myself three-dimensionally.

Two months before the big day, I began my desensitization. I bought a little tape recorder, (before my IPad) so I could practice listening to my voice. We don’t know what we sound like and it felt weird at first, and I hated my voice. Slowly I began to realize, I don’t sound too bad. My boyfriend (now husband) lent me his camera/video camera and I practiced almost daily. I really stared and saw. Initially, I didn’t like how I looked. I noticed the gap in my bottom teeth, my short arms, and the stiffness to my movements. And the worst realization was that I saw that my limp was more pronounced than I thought. I felt slapped, shocked and a little sad.

Yes, at first I noticed all that was wrong, but then something amazing happened, the more I watched, I began to like what I saw. I’m SO not that bad. I move fine, my voice is perfect and I have a message to share. Maybe I am OK at this public speaking thing.

I have done public speaking before, but nothing like TEDx. With TEDx, there are rules: no notes, no podium, rigid time limit. I am used to more interaction with my audience. All this was part of my terror, but I digress…back to my prep process.

 

Doing this added another dimension to my sense of self-acceptance and body love, now I saw how I moved and spoke out in the world. I can’t begin to explain how liberating and empowering this desensitization experiment was for me. Another piece of the prep process too was doing Speaking Circles. Much better than Toastmasters. Read about this experience in an earlier post.

I have a new idea worth spreading, video therapy. For anyone who struggles with low self-esteem, poor body image, social ineptness, break out your video camera and let yourself shine through and the healing begin.

 

Speaking at TEDxMIA

My standing O.

I was selected to be one of 9 speakers at a sold out TEDxMiami show almost two years ago. I get asked all the time, how did you do it, what was it like to do a TED talk? First of all, it was a dream to be selected, that the curators thought my idea was worth spreading. A part of me still operated on the belief that I wasn’t worthy and who am I, to be speaking to 500 people.

I would have never dreamed my path would have led to doing public speaking. I HATED public speaking, as many do. I didn’t like to be seen, to be stared at from a group standpoint.  I am great one on one. Look at my chosen profession, clinical social worker, changing the world one person at a time! But get me in front of a group, I freeze, I disconnect, I dissociate from my body. When it sunk in that I was doing a TED talk, a part of me wanted to run and not do it.

But I never run. I tend to push myself towards growth, and before thinking too much, I often jump into areas that make me uncomfortable. And I remembered something a friend said to me once, “when you stand up to share, we are not staring at you, we are interested in what you have to say.” Something clicked with those words, I got it, I always associated staring as a negative, that people look down at me due to my visible disability. After her words, my perception of the word “stare” changed and I no longer took myself out of the game.

I have been putting myself out on various stages for a while now. And this is only the beginning. TED national/global here I come!

How do you push yourself towards growth?

Find your SELF, find your love.