As my speaking career has grown over the last 6 years, my dreams of helping others have kept pace. Since the dawn of 2011, it seems to have kicked into high gear. At the moment, I am on tap to speak at upcoming fundraising events, awards banquets and similar celebrations for Make-A-Wish, Easter Seals and Meals on Wheels.
I love this!
As my Mom would tell you, this feeling of joy is a far cry from the 16-year-old version of me who constantly questioned his younger sister’s charitable endeavors, badgering her with the question: “you really DON’T make any money?!?”
My sister always told me that it was rewarding to give back through Walk-a-Thons, Bowl-a-Thons, etc. The only ‘a-thon’ I ever participated in back then was the Three Stooges New Years Eve Marathon. Talk about giving ‘til it hurts: Hey Moe! (boink, slap, nyuk nyuk nyuk!!).
At the still-climbing-the-hill age of 43, my goals have shifted a bit since the teen years. I have fallen in love with giving, finding that it is as good for my heart as the elliptical machine at the gym.
During my very first in-office volunteer stint at Make-A-Wish NH, a Director walked by, said hello, entered her office…then came back out, asking: “You’re that speaker, right?”
After replying affirmatively that I am a speaker, she dropped the greatest bombshell that’s ever been dropped on me: would I consider spending some time with Wish Kids, helping them to become more comfortable and confident sharing their wish stories?
I have been speaking for 6 years. I can easily speak for 3-hour seminars, and can cook through a pretty speedy 180 words per minute comfortably.
Her question left me speechless, a monumental feat.
My answer violated every short-sighted thought that I had as a 16-year-old scrounging for gas money: “I’d be honored!”
And from there, the floodgates opened. I’ve been VERY busy speaking, and word is getting around…and I love it. Currently on my Spring schedule: Easter Seals, Make-A-Wish and Meals on Wheels…three amazing organizations whose ranks are filled by volunteers, and I get to share my time with them in praise, motivation and support.
I love it!