Do It Myself Blog – Glenda Watson Hyatt

Motivational Speaker

What Impossible Idea Would You Attempt If Surrounded by People Who Won’t Let You Fail?

Filed under: Motivation — by at 2:18 pm on Thursday, October 4, 2012

You must do the one thing you think you cannot.

~ Eleanor Roosevelt

For those of you who I have yet had the pleasure of meeting face-to-face, I speak Glenda-ish – English with a unique accent due to my significant speech impairment, a result of my cerebral palsy.

Over the last forty-some years, my inability to easily communicate verbally with anyone anywhere has been more of a barrier, more of a disability than my inability to walk independently, and has resulted in frustration, isolation and missed interactions.

Glenda Watson Hyatt presenting on stage at SXSW 2011
(Photo credit: Paul Merrill)

In recent years, with the advances in technology – text-to-speech software, iPads and such – verbal communication has become possible. Because of these technologies and opportunities that have presented themselves to me, I have had the pleasure of giving numerous presentations – something I never imagined possible in my wildest dreams.

Now, I feel myself being magnetically drawn to My Second Most Unlikely Career Choice: a public speaker. (My first most unlikely career choice is a neurosurgeon.) The irony of this direction: terrifying yet exciting.

This past weekend, my husband Darrell and I attended SOBCon (a think tank for solopreneurs and small businesses) in Portland, Oregon. Founder Liz Strauss kicked off the conference by pointing out we were surrounded by people who won’t let us fail.

I definitely felt that. No matter who I shared my crazy idea with, they were all supportive of my intention to become a motivational speaker; they asked questions and offered insights, ideas and contacts.

Charlie Gilkey from Productive Flourishing did say that there would be challenges along the way. Yes, there will be. A few that quickly come to mind include: explaining to event organizers how someone with a significant speech impairment can deliver a presentation of high value, getting to the venues and up on stage (been there, done that!), and having the right words to deliver the best message that I can. However, those challenges (and countless others that will no doubt pop up along the way) are not insurmountable.

All weekend, not one person looked at my shaky jerkiness and my indecipherable speech and said, “Are you kidding me? There’s no way you can do that.” Not one person.

Can you appreciate the mind bend I have been struggling with since getting home on Sunday night. I am putting plans in place to become the one thing that, until recently, I thought I could not. This is possible because of advances in technology and because I am surrounded by people – both from SOBCon and elsewhere – who won’t let me fail.

What is the one thing you think you cannot do but are being urged to try? Can you identify people within your circle who will not let you fail? Or, who do you need to connect with to surround yourself with positive, supportive, creative-thinking people who want to see you succeed? What would that mean to you to accomplish the one thing you think you cannot?

Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments below.

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  1. Who Are the People Who Won't Let You Fail? | Liz Strauss at Successful Blog


Comment by MissDazey

October 4, 2012 @ 2:57 pm

So what is the next step? And what will your speeches about?

Of course, you know that I think you can do anything you set your mind to do.

Comment by Paula Lee Bright

October 4, 2012 @ 3:44 pm

You wrote, “All weekend, not one person looked at my shaky jerkiness and my indecipherable speech and said, ‘Are you kidding me? There’s no way you can do that. Not one person.”

And why would they? You are a vital and creative woman (with a great sense of humor!) with tons to offer to the world online.

How lucky are we that we live in the age of technology? I love it! Hugs to you, Madame Speaker. 😉

Comment by Glenda

October 4, 2012 @ 3:54 pm

Thank you, Miss Dazey, for your ongoing, raving cheerleading!

I’m sensing my inner voice – the one that keeps getting me trouble! – is leading me in the direction of motivational speaking. My next immediate step is to get up the first iteration of my speaker site.

Comment by Terry Starbucker

October 4, 2012 @ 3:58 pm

Glenda, you are so right. We will not let you fail. Don’t stop believin’! 🙂
(and write the book too)
All the best,

Comment by Glenda

October 4, 2012 @ 4:05 pm

Paula, yes, ain’t technology grand?! And…thank you!

(You were missed at SOBCon.)

Comment by Glenda

October 4, 2012 @ 4:08 pm

Terry, thank you. And, yes, I need to carve out some sacred time for writing.

Thank you for an amazing weekend! You and Liz done good. 🙂

Comment by Spashionista

October 4, 2012 @ 4:47 pm

You can absolutely do this! Neurosurgery, not so much! ;-P
Believe it or not my own blogs, both the fashion oriented Spashionista Report, and my art site Gallery Celesta, are both things I never thought I could do. When you shake, spaz, and have a grasping reflex it’s not easy to create art. When I started I drew one pixel at a time, them technology kicked in and gave me a hand. I consider art to be my occupation even though I don’t get paid to do it.
I also wanted to “model” clothes and talk about style from a CP perspective because I wanted other young with CP to know that it’s ok to want to look good. That’s how Spashionista Report was born. I thought if I went out on that limb for them they’d be motivated and think, “if she can do it why can’t I”?
I’m lucky enough to have a terrific husband who is infinitely supportive, but I’m also secure enough in my own identity to not need a ton of approval before I try something.
Let me know when you’ll be speaking in the Nashville area because I can’t wait to hear you! 😉

Comment by Michelle Vandepas

October 4, 2012 @ 7:59 pm

Awesome Glenda. It’s my dream to speak as well, to large audiences. I guess if you can do it I have no excuses. thanks for being an inspiration.

Comment by Brandie Kajino

October 4, 2012 @ 8:51 pm

Know what’s crazy? I’ve already told people (before I even read this) that you ARE a public speaker. People are (rightfully) impressed, because you are awesome sauce girlfriend. If I can help you, I’m an email/tweet/text/whatever away. 🙂
You can’t only do it, you ARE doing it! Mwah!

Comment by Ali Davies

October 4, 2012 @ 11:19 pm

I am looking forward to coming to one of your public speaking gigs.

Comment by Paula Lee Bright

October 5, 2012 @ 8:00 am

Glenda, I very much missed being at SOBcon. Maybe next time!

Comment by Nance

October 5, 2012 @ 11:13 am

You are my inspiration Glenda, Thank you very much. I’ve always enjoyed great photography & wished that I could take photos of toddlers at play & the way they bubble with bliss & create greeting cards with them. I stayed safe with gardening & quilting. Yesterday I upgraded to a Nikon camera & hired a photographer to take me out on photo shoots. I’m out of my comfort zone & very excited!!
Daring to do the thing I thought I couldn’t,

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