Recharge for impact

 Out of power

How do you recharge your batteries? If you don’t recharge, you won’t have the “oomph” to charge your audience.

I’m working on a book about speaking skills for introverts. As we’ve mentioned before, “introvert” doesn’t mean “shy.” It has to do with how you process information, and how you recharge. Those two are intimately connected.

I love speaking, and I’m definitely an introvert. Modern realities can be harder on us than on extroverts, simply because of a side effect of time demands. Introverts need “alone time,” but in the rush to get things done, alone time is scarce.

I dislike the distance I have to drive for my day job because of the gasoline expense, but it’s the best alone time I have, and I am grateful for it.

As I write this, I am about a day behind my usual publication schedule. It is Thanksgiving Day in the United States. I am the first one awake in my house. Everything is quiet–my best time for writing. Just before this, I sat and read an article that had nothing to do with work–the first time that has happened in weeks. (The room had a single, small “chair” made of white porcelain. It’s the other place where I am seldom disturbed.)

In the last week or so my students have been doing speeches to actuate (get the audience to take action). We are trying to record every such speech so we can assess the effective of our program. The camera has been a practical problem. I don’t remember the model number, but the name should be “Eater of Batteries.” I have used 16 AA batteries, and I still have a few speakers to go! But when the batteries die, the camera won’t record, no matter how good the speech is.

Here’s a reality: if I don’t charge my own batteries, I become useless to my audience, just like that camera. It’s not selfish to take care of myself. It’s another way of taking care of my audience. It’s how you, in essence, bring the best of yourself to them.

What do you need to do to recharge?

Photo by Flickr user B Rosen.

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Author: Donn King

Donn King works with people who want to forge top-notch speaking skills to increase their influence and impact so they can advance their career or business. He is associate professor of communication studies at Pellissippi State Community College in Knoxville, Tennessee, as well as a speaker and writer. His background includes ministry, newspaper, radio, small magazines and other publications, as well as co-authoring a textbook and blogging.