It started as an interview and turned into a coaching session.
Along the way I told him that I’m giving my first TedX talk on Saturday at Princeton University.
Pink, whose TED Talk on motivation has been viewed 11 million times, immediately offered some incredible, easy-to-follow advice, prefaced with a criticism of public speaking in general.
“I think there’s a greater problem with people giving talks,” he told me. “I’ve said this before — you don’t want to sound like [most-viewed TED speaker] Ken Robinson. And you don’t want to sound like I’m the next [best-selling self-help guru] Tony Robbins.”
“You want to sound like the first you,” Pink said. “That’s going to be much better. So sound like yourself.”
That brings us to another question.
How do you learn to sound like yourself?
That’s where Pink got precise.
He asked me what my topic would be.
“Embodied cognition,” I replied, referring to a fascinating field of research that shows how our physical bodies influence our mental lives.
“Sure, absolutely,” Pink said. “We have a really nice segment on embodied cognition.”
“Turn on a tape recorder,” he said. “Grab a beer with a friend or spouse, or partner or loved one. Have the friend ask you some questions like: Why should I care about embodied cognition? What is embodied cognition? Why does it matter in my life? What’s the one thing I should know about embodied cognition?”
“Just answer the questions like you would talking to somebody,” Pink advised. “That’s going to give you the building blocks for sounding like yourself.”
I’ll let you know how it goes.
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