I was asked to be a feature speaker at an event in Princes Town of Friday, a public speaking and poetry competition for the young people in the area. I still get humbled and nervous when people ask me to do the talk! I didn't ask many questions about the event, sometimes that gets me more nervous! I asked the venue, I am from the South of the island and have an idea of the town but its not an intimate knowledge so when I get there I see the event is on the Promenade, which is the equivalent of the town square! The middle of the town, chairs and chairs, a huge stage OMG! Well here you go Miss Akosua, some call me Yaki! I always wanted an opportunity like this, well here it is! So I pulled myself together, show up and shine, let it go! I left the prepared speech in the car! I had to talk! I just had to get it from the heart! Went down really well so lesson number one, speak always from the heart!
So as I come off the stage, I sat to listen to the young people make their presentations and they call me up on the stage to present the prize to the winner. As I approached the stage an older gentleman stopped me " Listen I am so upset and vex with you that you wrote that book" Now I'm startled! "Excuse me?" "Yes, why did you write that book?" before I could respond he said " You never took men's feelings into the picture, you painted a bad picture of the man, men have feelings as well" I'm thinking now oh boy how do I handle this? I said well I wrote the book because I wanted to tell an empowering story to heal me and heal anyone who read it, I wanted to be a demonstration of what is possible by doing the soul work and telling the truth. He said listen I am not convinced and I am still mad at you, let's hope that you have matured since then. I smiled, I thanked him for his feedback and was about to walk on to the stage, I turned around" sir out of curiosity did you read the entire book?" "Yes I did" "Ok so maybe you were not that pissed off then?" and I kept a steppin!
So lesson number two, not everyone will like your work, and be gracious in how you handle it!
It bothered me for about an hour though but I managed to let it go!
What can you be gracious under pressure about?