Quite possibly the best piece of advice I’ve been given in the past year came from my friend, mentor and occasional therapist, Richard Avdoian.
“Don’t try to be different. In fact, don’t try to be anything. Just be. Be yourself. Be the same person no matter where you go. As a result, you WILL be unique. And people will notice. Because there’s nothing more approachable than authenticity.”
I quoted Richard’s words of wisdom during a recent speech. Afterwards, an audience member asked me: “Because you wear a nametag all the time, do you feel like you need to be ‘on’ all the time?”
On? Like a comedian? An actor? Or a baseball player?
Well, for some people, that would mean every speech, every conversation, every interaction, would have to be like some big performance.
But what does “on” mean, anyway?
For comedians, maybe it means making people laugh.
For athletes, maybe it means scoring runs or baskets.
For actors, maybe it means captivating an audience.
It all depends.
I don’t know, maybe what it really means to “be on” is “to be yourself.”
Here’s a good example. One of my best friends is Bill Jenkins. He’s an author of 25 books, a preacher, a teacher, a former collegiate baseball superstar and most importantly, a great guy. And I think the reason I admire Bill so much is because I’ve read his books, taken his classes, heard his sermons, played golf and had countless lunches with him for over 10 years.
And he’s always the same person. With the exact same voice.
It always sounds like Bill. I hear that same eloquent, selfless baritone in every one of his writings, speeches or even in conversation, and I think, Man, that’s just Bill. He’s 100% authentic.
In other words, he’s always on.
I think Donald Trump said it best: figure out exactly who you are, then go out and be that person every day.
LET ME ASK YA THIS…
How do you feel about “being on”?
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Author/Speaker/That Guy with the Nametag