Like any great idea, Project:IDWIL doesn’t really exist until we stop thinking about it (and holy moley, do I think about it!) and actually start acting on it. Project:IDWIL, regardless of how many of layers of capability and action get fulfilled, can be successful if even the most basic building blocks are created. The building blocks of this project is essentially people volunteering their time to talk to students about why they do what they love.
1) The term ‘students’ is not limited to high school or college students…or even classroom students. Plenty of adults that are not in school, young children who aren’t in school yet, and any number of local organizations can benefit from what is ultimately exposure to the possibility to be inspired.
2) The term “talk…about why they do what they love” is just that simple. As a speaker, you can’t think about targeting people to inspire - your story can touch anyone directly or indirectly, and it can come from an one minute piece of your story. Just the same, not everyone will be inspired by your story. With all of that in mind, it would be maddening to attempt to strategize how to inspire people. So don’t. Just put your story out there. I am serious about the ‘story’ part, too! People relate to, react to, and connect with the emotional side of what you tell them.
Right now, as one guy, all I can do is go out there and talk to people and search for like-minded people who see value in the project. Creating an organized way to get more people to talk IDWIL and developing the website are in the works. So, in accordance with the thought at the top of this article, I started acting. On 12 September 2012, I spoke for 45 minutes to a classroom of students at my alma mater, Mascoutah Community High School.
Here is how it went. Nothing mind-blowing, but I left there feeling extremely fulfilled. Now, let me stipulate that 1) this was my first attempt at doing this 2) I am not a professional speaker 3) I had limited technical capabilities.
Plenty of room for work, but it only cost me time. And seeing how easily I can waste time in other parts of my life, then using the term cost even feels wrong. I just needed to act.
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