Saturday, December 20, 2014

Are You Trying Too hard? Learn the Art of Wu Wei - Effortless Action

Ever watch a presentation or have a conversation and come away feeling like the person was trying way too hard? 

I take a lot of exercise classes at my gym. Recently, we have had a few new teachers sub or introduce new classes. A week ago, I took a new dance based class with a new fitness instructor and found myself NOT enjoying it at all! I felt like I had a perpetual inner scowl and I couldn’t figure out why. I love to dance! I started blaming myself. “Am I just being pissy because the teacher I wanted to be here wasn’t here?” “Am I being ageist”(She was young and I’m not) “Am I being arrogant cause I think I’m such a hot dancer?” or ”Do I just hate and resist anything new?” All of the above could have been true, but midway through the class, the communication skills coach in me wanted to figure out what other dynamic might be playing out here. Maybe it wasn’t all me.

I reflected back on the fact that a few weeks ago, I’d taken the same class with a new teacher and loved her within two seconds. So instead of judging my feelings, I began to question where they might be coming from. As I watched the teacher smiling broadly and trying to encourage us to smile and pose and enjoy ourselves, I realized that she was trying too hard. She was trying to “make” us enjoy what we were doing instead of enjoying it herself and trusting that because she enjoys it, that enjoyment will infect us. Afterward, I spoke to a gym buddy who had also taken the class and she had concluded the same thing.

I decided to write a blog post about the difference between trying too hard and “just being” and then… low and behold, the next day, a friend of mine (I hadn’t spoken to her about this at all) happened to mention an article she’d read in the New York Times that she thought I would find interesting. It was called - A Meditation on the Art of Not Trying (John Tierney, 12/15/2014) and it specifically addresses what I had concluded! Amazing! So instead of having to write this whole post from scratch, I get to use Mr. Tierney’s article to support my ideas! Thanks John wherever you are!

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Beauty Pageants and Why I Agreed to Judge One

by Robyn Hatcher

Growing up, there were two things I'd look forward to every September. (School was not one of them) There was my birthday on Sept 8th and the Miss America Pageant that usually fell in that same week. Yes, the Miss America pageant. I never missed it!  Our TV used to be on the sun porch of our Philadelphia row house and I can vividly remember those early fall evenings. My sister and I would take our baths early and hunker down to watch the pageant. We rarely missed a year. Then there was Miss USA and Miss Universe and we’d faithfully watch those too. So when I was asked to be a judge in an upcoming state pageant for the Miss USA organization, I was excited. But after saying yes, and posting it on Facebook, I found that there were many people who thought saying yes was a big mistake and tried discouraging me.

That made me wonder: Was people’s blanket denigration of pageants warranted? And being an intelligent, liberated woman, what was it about pageants that I loved so much?

Friday, January 3, 2014

Start YOUR New Year's Evolution

We're always Evolving! 

5 ways I can help you revolutionize your communication.

In case you’ve ever wondered… What can Robyn and SpeakEtc. do for me?

Let me count the ways:

1)     Problem: You dread people asking: …and what do you do?” because you have a hard time explaining what you do in a way that doesn’t make their eyes glaze over or you feel like a used car salesman.

How I can help: In one or two one-one one sessions, I can discover what sets you apart, match what you do with your unique communication style, what I call your “ActorType” and help you create a pitch to be proud of.  Within the first 20 minutes of one session, I had a client call me a “genius” for transforming his generic jargon filled elevator pitch into an engaging, individualized, intro-mercial for his marketing business which he can now fold into a conversation, use on his website or pitch to investors or prospects.

 2)   Problem: You have an important presentation coming up and its success could mean recognition and more business and revenue for you and/or your company but you’re lacking confidence and don’t know how to pull it all together.

How I can help: I work with you and your presentation at any stage. I can organize and polish your existing material; help you write compelling content from scratch and/or help you hone your delivery skills (body language and voice) so that your presentation is engaging and reflects your unique communication style.  In the past year, within 3-6 sessions, I’ve helped upwards of 20 individuals organize, write, tweak and learn to deliver presentations on: Dating; Owning one’s beauty; running a business; socially responsible portfolio investing; investing in Master Limited Partnerships; Developing better fitness and health practices; bringing specialty foods to the U.S. market; Spiritual awakening in Peru; and many other fascinating topics. My clients have used these presentations at TedX conferences, for videos on their sites and other major and minor stages.

      3) Problem: Your job security and effectiveness is being compromised because you have difficulty expressing yourself successfully at work. Or your advancement at work is being hampered by your inability to show executive and leadership presence.