This past weekend there was a Survivorman marathon on TV featuring Les Stroud, survivalist expert. This time he was spending a week with an indigenous tribe in Africa. He didn’t know their language and, of course, they did not know English. Naturally, there was no TV, radio, Internet, or other type of entertainment…other than him. In the evenings, the tribespeople would sit and stare at him, watching his every move. He said that you can’t let people staring at you freak you out or you’ll never survive.
That got me to thinking….
The same is true when you go for your goals and dreams. People will stare at you. Some will be watching you, cheering you on and getting excited over every little bit of progress you make. Others will politely ask how you’re coming along on your goals and dreams—and they’re interested in you and what you’re doing—but they’re so wrapped up in their own hectic lives that they might not really notice what’s going on with you.
There will be a small group, though, that will watch you, looking for mistakes and goof-ups. These are the people whose close scrutiny might cause you to second-guess yourself and you might falter as a result. But you can’t let that happen. As Les Stroud says, you have to learn how to handle people watching you, especially the ones who might be secretly—or not so secretly—wishing that you’d stumble.
Your homework today is to make a list of what you will do when you are in the limelight or getting more attention than you’re used to. Think about the people you might see. Have handy some subjects that are safe.
For instance with the people who are watching you for missteps, perhaps, when they ask about your goals and dreams, you’ll want to have some general statements handy such as saying that you’re making progress or perking along, and then turn the conversation back to them. Ask them about projects they’re working on or things that they’re interested in. Keep turning the conversation back to them—keep it off of yourself.
With the other two groups of people—the ones who typically cheer you on and the ones who are interested but busy—you can have a few exciting anecdotes or a funny story handy to share with them. And, it’s always a great idea to ask them about themselves and what they’ve been up to!
You can do it!
I’m so proud of you!
Your Friend and Pep Pal,