Hello today from York, an historic town 100kms east of Perth. I’m at the function centre at the racecourse 🙂
Well, I was this time last Monday!
I was really lucky to be invited to be a guest speaker at a Ladies’ Day in York held by the Community Resource Centre which around 100 women attended and (ahem) so did Dame Edna too!
Well alright, not in person exactly, but a Dame Edna look-alike and just as funny.
After a weekend of faffing about with tech issues, trying to get my new Macbook Air to talk to my phone and my cables and my goodness knows what else, I sorted things out and had my shit (as they say) sorted.
Of course I’d been working on my speech for much longer. Mulling over what I’d say on my morning walks, pulling in this fact and that idea from books and websites I’d been reading, re-hashing the content, making a slide-show, adding in quotes, and then deciding it was all useless, pulling it all to bits and starting over again.
It was only when I asked other lovely bloggers to contribute with their words of travel wisdom that I saw a theme developing. How travel can empower you.
Hot news – blog post coming soon with empowering words of wisdom from other travel bloggers -their comments and stories about how travel can give you confidence. If you’re a travel blogger reading this and would like to collaborate, just drop me a note in the comments, but fast!
And so onto the show …
Dame Edna comes to York
So what did I talk about?
Well, in a nutshell, it was about empowerment, and comfort zones and how not to let your past get in the way of your present. It was a lot about travel and how that can give you wings to fly (metaphorically), and it was about blogging – and how that has given me (and could give you) a new lease of life as you get older.
The ladies of York were so welcoming. The other guest speakers were enlightening. And the lead act, Andrew Simpson, a Dame Edna look-alike had us all nearly wetting ourselves with laughter.
For my speech I drew on well known quotes such as …
“Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma – which is living with the results of other people’s thinking,” by Steve Jobs
I encouraged listeners to …
Be seekers, be eager to learn, get out and engage with the world and gratefully accept the treasures you’ll be empowered with as a result.
and I urged women of a certain age to think like Richard Branson …
“My Biggest motivation is to just keep challenging myself. I see life almost like one long university education that I never had – every day I’m learning something new.” Richard Branson
I also said …
[Tweet “It doesn’t really matter where you travel. There are stories and lessons to learn everywhere.”]
What I learnt
- There’s no point being nervous because generally people are lovely, and receptive
- Find something to do with your hands – I held my iPad
- Have a glass of water nearby
- Make sure your technical equipment is set up and working before you stand up to talk.
- Look up. Look up. Look up and make eye contact around the room, and SMILE (smiling when you talk I discovered is almost impossible unless you pause frequently.)
- If your iPad throws a wobbler (mine did, and I was reading from it) keep calm and carry on.
- Hope that a slide with a picture of a rock with “OH SHIT” painted on it comes up at exactly the same moment!
- Re point 6 above … in technical emergency make sure you have a back up of your speech somewhere else.
- Don’t worry about holding your tummy in – you won’t remember to do this anyway, so wear Spandex darling!
Carolyn Wren, was first to speak. She’s a multi award winning author who writes tales of romance and suspense. She’s written fifteen books and won eight awards for her fiction tales. Carolyn shared some fascinating insights about her life as an author.
Jana Vodesil-Buruffi (below) is an award winning artist and creator of ‘Permanent Expressions’ a collection of art portraits acknowledging the outstanding contribution of 50 West Australian women to our society. Jana’s story about escaping communist Czechoslovakia as a young woman, and arriving as a refugee in Perth penniless at 23 in 1981, was heart wrenching, humbling and inspiring.
Leanne, the very funny MC (below) owns The Grand House York – if you fancy a night in York you can check the guest house out here York WA
If you’d like to find out more about the historic town of York and the Avon Valley just click here.
Have you ever given a speech? Do tell. What was it about?