“Man was designed for accomplishment, engineered for success, and endowed with the seeds of greatness.”
– Zig Ziglar, Week 2 / Day 3
I love Steve Martin’s book, Born Standing Up, specifically the audiobook which is narrated by Steve and includes a some banjo strumming between certain points. The book’s about Steve Martin’s career in standup comedy, and why he has not done standup in over 20 years.
It’s a must read for anyone who is trying to ship their art, whether you’re a comedian perfecting your routine or a middle level professional working on a presentation. It takes the same amount of work that Steve put into his career. Nobody, not even Steve Martin, is a success overnight. You need work on your craft, if you ever hope to improve.
Unlike Steve Martin, I wasn’t Born Standing Up, I was Born Sitting Down. Only after nightly performances year after year, did he start to appear to be born standing up. I didn’t realize what I wanted to be at such a young age, many of us don’t. A few years ago, I realized that I needed to work on my public speaking, if I ever wanted to move to the next stage in my career.
Working on your public speaking is very similar to standup, and it’s no different than writing a daily blog post. It is about the commitment to practice your craft regularly and ship. You need to interact with others, get feedback, and rework. It won’t always work out, but you’ll learn from you mistakes and get to fight the Resistance again.
One of the goals in my current Pick Four program is to write a daily blog post to help create the habit. For one of my next Pick Four goals, I want to figure out a way to give one speech a week. My main problem will be to figure out where I can give these speeches, but that’s part of the fun.
If I stick to my goals and keep my promises, maybe, one day, people will think I was Born Standing Up.