Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Resolve to Speak & Deliver in 2012

Earlier this year, I 'Resolved to Speak & Deliver in 2011'. Looking back, how'd I do?

Here's my list of Speaking/Coaching Goals for 2011:

1. Write my definitive keynote - and start giving it anywhere someone will listen. (This did not happen, though I have a few false starts on my computer)

2. Join the National Speaker's Association (I have continued to put this off)

3. Attend Toastmasters regularly - join an Advanced Club - and never give a speech that isn't lending itself to my ultimate goals of speaking. (For the most part, this worked out until this fall, but not to the degree I had intended)

4. Coach/Mentor more speakers in 2011 than I have over the last 5 years combined. (This was a success! I've coached a ton of people this year, and am looking forward to new clients next year.)

5. Use video, for speeches, marketing, and speaking tips on my blogs and websites. (This didn't happen at all.)

6. Create audio products out of my speeches and coaching. (This didn't happen either.)

7. Compete in the International Speech Contest (Finished in the top 90 in the world this year, for the seventh time in ten years.)

8. Market & Network myself to a higher degree than ever before - this one is for all of us - nobody will hear or be helped by your message if they don't know who you are and where they can find you! (This was  a medium success)

Wow...on one hand, that can look a bit depressing. You might wonder why I would even share it with you, vs. letting it just get swept under the digital rug, buried with blog entries past. I'm sharing it because it's true, and because I bet a lot of you are looking at your goals right now and seeing everything you didn't get done too, and may be getting a bit angry and discouraged. Hey, it happens. Life gets in the way. We lose sight of our goals in the mire of the everyday.

Rationalization is an easy next step. Medical problems in my family. So little focus-time, it seems, with six kids around. New projects that came up. Even success gets in the way. If you want more coaching clients, guess what? They take time! Doing well in the contest takes time as well - I spent most of my summertime focused on winning the World Championship, followed by a rapid 'failure' in the first 36 hours I was there. Coming home brought with it some re-evaluation, and then re-evaluation of my re-evaluation. Rationalizations aside, I know I could have done more.

How 'bout you? Did you do EVERYTHING you wanted to do? Did you find unexpected obstacles? Unexpected success? Maybe 2011 was your best year ever. I hope so. Even if it wasn't, it's not the end of the world.

My 2011 found other successes for me in my relationship with my wife and family. I met a ton of people here in Denver. This blog tripled in traffic and content. It wasn't a perfect year. In some ways it wasn't even a good year. But it was a year I started to actively focus on 'Winning Anyway', which is my key message to the world. We can focus on losses and failures, or victories and accomplishments. We can say we didn't, or simply that we haven't yet. We can decide something won't work, or we can realize it won't work the way we're trying to do it, and look to do it Anyway, in a new way.

Many of my goals in 2012 are the same. I have some new ones I'll share tomorrow, and at least one I'm taking off the list. What will YOU be doing in 2012 to Speak & Deliver? Share your comments here or on Twitter and Facebook. And thank you for being a part of my Success Anyway, this year!


  1. Hi, RIch! I appreciate the post and the honesty. I'm wondering about your thoughts on a comparison. Leo Babauta (of ZenHabits fame) and some others advocate doing away with specific goals, and rather focusing on intrinsic motivation. Their approach reminds me of Peter McWilliams and his book from many years ago, Life 101, in which he distinguishes between life purpose and goals. All of them seem to say that focusing on goals can cause you to miss opportunities that might actually fit your life purpose better. I don't see this is a conflict of opposites, but rather different views of the same phenomenon, but you've done a lot of thinking about these things. What do you think about this? A couple of example essays: and .




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