“You have to write an e-book!” That’s what most everyone has told me. But there is someone who thinks differently about this: Eoin Purcell, of the blog PublishingPerspectives. http://publishingperspectives.com/?p=13674
He writes that it doesn’t matter which form of media you use. E-books are good, they are popular. But they–like all great ideas–will become obsolete.
If we focus too intensely on the vehicle, we won’t know when it’s time to get on the road. So to speak.
Instead, he advises that we focus not on all the thousands of devices and new technologies that are birthed every day. No—we only need to do 2 things. Focus on the message and on the relationships.
That’s it. Those are the only universal constants in this sea of techno-change that we are swimming, floundering, or drowning in.
This is great news! Because I missed the whole blue-ray DVD genre. I can’t even tell you who won the formatting wars. And all I know about my computer is that it is beige.
But it doesn’t matter. We don’t need to be cutting-edge in order to succeed in this world. We just need to be willing to do these few things:
Thanks to the best audiences in the world at ALL our “Remember When” Honky Tonk variety shows last month and last Saturday. You make our job easier by giving us your energy, enthusiasm, and of course, your laughter! Thank you to our talented cast, director and producer and crew for making each show a big success. You are an amazing example of how to, “Get Your SHINE Together!” and Live Life–Lite!
Humor is all about being AWARE. And then ACTING on that awareness. Then ACCEPTING the results of our actions.
One of my friends is well aware of the tiniest detail when it comes to speaking. Lynda Stuckey, The Speech, Accent and Voice Expert at ClearlySpeaking offers weekly tips on vocal use, care of the voice, and other fascinating topics that someone outside her field may miss entirely.
In her last newsletter, she brought up the concept of Asking Questions with Downward Pitch. What? Don’t we always ask with an upward pitch??!!
Here’s what Lynda has to say about it:
“Not all questions are asked with a rising pitch inflection; many questions have a falling pitch at the end. This could be confusing to non-native English speakers. The way to determine if a question has rising pitch is to remember that “Yes/No” and clarifying questions require a rising pitch:
Are you going to eat with me?
When are you leaving for France?
“But a question requiring more of a verbal response often ends with the downward pitch:
What is your new address?
How are you doing?
“When there are two choices in the question, the first choice gets rising inflection and the second one falls:
Do you want pizza (rising inflection), or hamburgers for dinner? (falling pitch)
“How do you ask tag questions? Try the following sentence with both falling and rising inflection. Could it go either way depending on the context?
You are taking vacation tomorrow, aren’t you?
“How do you know which way to go with your pitch? In this case, it depends on how certain you are of the response.
“Read new articles posted weekly at my blog: http://lyndastucky.wordpress.com/
Sound Matters Blog: http://lyndastucky.wordpress.com/”
This week’s Comedy Around the World goes–everywhere! When I travel, I always bring my running shoes. That way, I can see the sights and get a good workout. And the better shape I am in, I can outrun pickpockets and muggers. So it’s a win-win.
I thought about my running shoes: They are like a sense of humor.
Think of it this way: Not every hotel will have a gym. If you are staying in a youth hostel, you may not even have a lock on the door. Or a doorknob, at some places.
Not every country has a populace that is interested in exercise. In most countries, if you are running outside, people will wonder who is chasing you. Or else they will look at you like you just walked in from off the spaceship.
But it doesn’t matter. With your running shoes on, you are mobile. You can step aside the stares. You can outrun the danger and negativity. You can traverse the countryside with your freedom.
You are in control of where you will go, and how.
Thanks to everyone in the audience at the St. Marys Chamber Dinner last Friday! You made my job a lot easier, and I got to do all my powdered-metal jokes, too. Thanks to Mark for informing me that St. Marys, PA is the powdered metal capital. Thanks to Larry for being a good sport, and thanks to the tap dancer who said I was wearing a chip-clip in my hair (I wasn’t). Thanks, too, to the guy who liked my Easter jokes. I love it when you yell out your feedback–you make the show a lot funnier than it already is!!
I had the chance opportunity to talk to Bill Sanders during his recent visit at our conference. Bill has presented to over 5 million students since 1978. Over 1,000 schools voted Bill Sanders “Greatest Assembly Speaker Ever”! Authored 15 parenting and teen books. Has shared the platform with Art Linkletter, Dr. Norman Vincent Peale, Terry Bradshaw, and Zig Ziglar. Not to mention sharing the stage with former Presidents Ford and Reagan. http://www.billspeaks.com/
So when Bill tells me something, I listen. We were talking about his message to the students: be yourself. Not looking to the left or the right to see what others are doing. Raising your hand when you want to. Speaking out when you have something to say.
It’s tough to NOT do these behaviors, especially in such an intensely competitive culture like ours. What’s the solution? Bill told me, “You need to have something you can do that lets you just be on cruise control.” This ’something’ would take care of the need to compare. It would thwart the tendency to put ourselves down. It would take the fear out of speaking out with our independent thoughts.
What does YOUR cruise control look like? Maybe it’s a strong visualization of yourself succeeding. Maybe it’s reviewing an uplifting quote from a famous person—or from a regular person who just sings your praises.
Or maybe it’s cloaking yourself with a humorous outlook. A forcefield of light(ness) that resists being permeated. That bounces off of it every negative thought, person, bad impulse and comparison. You can be contained in that field and operate at your best. Think Boy In The Plastic Bubble but without the need for Healthcare Reform. You can see others, but you can’t be influenced by their germs of negative vibes.
Are you driving on cruise today? Why not? When will you start?
Are you ready to see who will win the MMA title? Will it be Frank Mir, or will it be Shane Carwin? I read an article about Shane Carwin. He’s not your typical pro athlete. He has a full-time job, a family, a mortgage. And he is vying for the MMA championship title. How does he do it all?
Carwin explains that, “for me, the day job is a place for relaxation. It’s a spot for me to get away from fighting and go sit down with normal people that really don’t care that I fight.”
What an earth-shattering statement! He goes to work to relax!
Just think—if we’d use our sense of humor we could do the same. Maybe we won’t win the MMA title, but we can find a respite from our daily fights, too. Carve your humor spot and go there each day to refresh, rejuvenate, and recharge your system. You’ll be ready for the ocatagon in no time!
Facebook Fan Page readers: To read the ‘rest of the story’, please click this link: http://yourshiningexample.com/wp-blog
Pelosi think’s it’s a brilliant idea! Many people think it’s a horrendous idea! The Palestinians want their land back! Schools need more money! Taxes are too high! Municipalities need more money!
Everyone has their angle. They know what they need. And they are solidly on their
We make a mistake when we think that by talking louder and getting angrier, we can change people’s minds. Make them think rationally. Break through their denial and join our side. Then things will be easier.
We do this when we “add” humor, too. Much like “adding” women to studies conducted on men, this strategy doesn’t work. It doesn’t allow us to see the whole picture. We can’t see what’s really going on in the minds and intentions of our adversaries (or those we want to persuade).
But when we really see their needs, intentions, problems, and concerns–then we can start speaking their language. We will know what kinds of topics we can safely joke about. We’ll know their sore spots, the places where they will not budge.
And the paradox is that when we respect the other person’s viewpoint, then they are much more amenable to hearing our side.
What will you
laugh about today? Whose side have you investigated
Knowing how to be funny is serious business. You have to make your material universal (so people will know what you are talking about.)
But if you make it too universal, it’s schlocky, and you are considered a hack. How many times have you heard about Taco Bell, airline food, airline metal detectors, beer, drugs, etc., etc., etc. Probably every time you turn on Comedy Central.
You can still talk about those things, but swing it from a different angle. This morning on the radio I heard about an automated drive-through at a fast food restaurant. The voice was happy. Because it was outsourced. But when the actual person appeared, she wasn’t so artifically happy. Or even naturally happy.
That is a premise that even I would listen to. And I’ve heard it all.
That’s a story line you could run with. Because it’s so new. Because it comments on something universal: the technology that we all must face every day.
This type of humor is nourishing:
! It highlights our common struggle.
! It invites us to break through the stress.
! It pulls us in to laugh about the inconsistency of the scene.
! It whip-stitches us to each other, reminding us that we’re all in this together.
So why not look for more things to make ourselves laugh and keep up this chain of comedy?
Nitro searches for the best place to cross
This week’s Comedy Around the World goes geocaching. Yesterday a group of friends and I went hiking through rough mountainous western Pennsylvania terrain to see one of the many iron furnaces that dot the wooded landscape in our area.
Not only did we enjoy the breathtaking (and that’s not just from the 90 degree hill climb) view, we also found a treasure. We found the cache buried beneath a large rock along the side of the iron furnace.
We logged in, took an item from the box and then we left some items. The next people who find the cache will do the same. We don’t know them. We didn’t know the people who logged in before we did. But we all go through the same motions.
It’s a little like using our sense of humor. We get ideas from others, we add our own. And the entire spiel adds up to an exciting adventure. Our “treasure” is creating a lighter atmosphere where none existed before. Like seeing a Dora the Explorer notebook in the middle of the woods. We’re adding an unexpected, surprising and delightful item to life.
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