Do I have a chance? : LUSENET : What keeps you up at night? : One Thread

I'm interested in a career as a public speaker. I have excellent ideas and valuable insights, as well as years of experience onstage. On the other hand I am "genetically challenged" with an odd personal appearance. Do I have a chance with corporate audiences?

-- Morgan Blackwood (, January 29, 2001


There is no guarantee how a career turns out but if we truly want to do something, none of us will find out the real answer until we have tried. Just as it is good to consider the worst case scenario, one should consider the possiblity also. Corporate audiences don't want pretty people with no message, they value their time and what they will learn and if you can deliver that value, then you have a shot at gaining acceptance as a public speaker as the next person. Physical limitations are as big as you see them and big as you let others see them and I certainly would not contemplate a career in public speaking if I am even a tiny bit consumed by self-doubt of how others perceived me.

If you tried and failed, then what failed is the approach you took and maybe contents. Public speaking only gets better with perseverance. You mentioned that you have on-stage experience so I think it should not boil down to technical competence, so it has to be what you believe that your limitations are. The answer to your question actually lies within you, it is about that common chant you hear mostly from religiously inspired people "You Gotta Believe". Personally there is no guarantee that people will accept you, just as there is no guarantee that people will accept me either; it is not enjoyable living our lives based on what might happen that never happened or never will happen. At the end of the day what you have is a challenge in front of you and I say is the bigger the challenge faced, the better the man/woman becomes. Most speakers worry about getting the audiences attention, in your case you are worried that you will get the audiences attention but that your physical limitations will detract from your message. In that case the message has to be more powerful than the limitations. Only you can decide how much you can personally envisage an audience being inspired and pleasantly surprised by what you have to offer. Your life destiny is yours to control and if things do not work out, well, at least you have the satisfaction to know that you tried - and sometimes that is an accomplishment by itself. Do you have a chance to fulfill your dream? We all have a chance, but most of us will never dare to find out if we did.

I've linked some web pages that you may interest you, click on the link attached for and take a look at the links provided. They are aimed at providing you encouragement. I am not saying it is not easy but what you are saying by the phrasing of your question is that you want to do this. As long as you believe that that you want to do is a possibility you have a shot at trying to accomplish your dreams, no matter how in reality, those dream might turn out.



Personal Profile at:

-- Mark Zorro (, January 29, 2001.

Morgan, I don't believe appearance has a lot to do with how people perceive you after the first 30 seconds. At that point, people will start to listen to what you have to say instead of focus on the physical. Of course a few will get stuck on the physical, and there's no way around that. I "speak" (pardon the pun) from personal experience myself. I have a large tumor imbedded in my left jaw (non- cancerous), and it grows slowly as I age. I'm a pastor of a small church where I speak weekly to about 110 people; but I've spoken to groups of all sizes in both church and other public settings. Appearance doesn't have to be an obstacle if you don't let it become your own focus. I've found that people are sometimes more likely to listen if they see that you have overcome some personal roadblocks to do what you feel called to do. They will know you have a passion and a drive to do what you love! When you run out of your own ability to persevere and move forward, draw upon God's strength. Peace & Grace, Curtis

-- Curtis B (, May 14, 2001.

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