By Nataly Kogan

How practicing acceptance saved my speech

Nataly in front of gillette crowdA few weeks ago I delivered a keynote at Gillette Stadium to a group of awesome customer service professionals -- and did it without power, lights, slides, or air conditioning. 

I'm so grateful to have had this less-than-ideal experience!

When I got to Gillette, the attendees had been there all day without air conditioning on what was a humid and hot afternoon. The organizers had managed to get one mic working on backup power, so I grabbed it and got up on a darsk-ish stage.

I acknowledged that the situation was less than ideal for all of us -- we were hot, they'd had a long day, I couldn't use any slides I'd prepared -- but asked everyone to pull together and make it work the best we could. We moved big round tables out of the way so as many people as possible could bring their chairs closer to the stage and see me.

I gave it my all (omg I was melting and grateful I had a blazer over my tshirt!) and threw in some extra jokes to lighten the day. And I was so grateful to have a warm, engaged, enthusiastic audience supporting me the whole time.

Life is never perfect. There are always things that don't go your way. 

Acknowledge the imperfections, be honest about how you feel, and then do the best thing you can to serve the moment!

Next up: How I accidentally became a public speaker on purpose

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