My Journey to the TED Stage! (almost...)

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I’m a TED Talk speaker!! Well, almost.

Since my discovery of TED Talks, I’ve fantasized about being on the big stage. I can feel the excitement of waiting backstage, hear the audience murmur just before my talk… and have already started quieting my inner critic in preparation for the moment I step out from behind the curtain and onto the big red dot.

There’s just one problem. I haven’t delivered a TED talk. Not yet anyway.

As it goes with most of our big dreams, there is a long list of reasons why I didn’t take action to make it a reality.


Here are a few thoughts that held me back…

(spoiler alert! These may sound VERY familiar!):

  • I need more:

    • Speaking Experience on BIG stages

    • Paid Speaking Gigs

    • Followers on Social Media

  • I don’t have a big idea that is:

    • New

    • Exciting

    • Earth Shaking

  • I'll get nervous and forget my talk. Everyone will see that I’m an imposter.

And (drum roll please)… Here’s the truth:

  • I have a lot of speaking experience (including several paid gigs).

  • Speaking experience isn’t even necessary to deliver a successful TED Talk.

  • The number of followers on social media has no correlation to success on the TED stage.

  • We ALL have a big idea worthy of the TED stage.

  • Completely eliminating nervousness on the big day is impossible, and that’s a good thing! A healthy dose of the jitters before a presentation keeps us grounded, focused, and present.

  • Imposter? No way. I’ll be telling my story, and I’m the only one with the credentials to do it!!

I finally pushed past all of the “big” obstacles in my way, and guess what?!? They weren’t so big after all!!

I developed my TED talk title, "Confessions of a Professional Imposter", created a talk outline, and wrote a proposal for the TED and TEDx stages. Then... I took action. So far, I've submitted proposals to the big TED stage and 19 TEDx events.

When we take actions that create a path for our dreams to follow, it's like the dream takes a deep sigh of relief and says "Finally! I've been waiting for you to let me in"

I found out this week that I'm "in the vetting process" for a TEDx event in March!! There are three more phases to get through, and... I just gotta say it again... my talk is in the vetting process!!!

In quiet moments... I visualize myself on the TED stage. I have no doubt my dream will come true.

Take that fear! 

While the journey to achieving my big dream will look very different from yours, I’m willing to bet the things holding us back are very similar.

What big dreams are you waiting to take action on? 

Take a leap. 

Be afraid and do it anyway.  

 Then... let me know how it goes! I'll be here cheering for you, and I'll let you know how my TED dream is coming along too.

The reward for our bravery? We get to watch our big dreams come true!