Celebrate Your Imperfections
We're gonna take this exercise and we're gonna, I think, use Kimberly again as the guinea pig,
(laughs) I'm ready.
and show you what you can do with it from a presentation standpoint. Now, we just gave you an example of how you could use it in a more, kind of like, collaboration and team-building perspective, which I think is very valuable, and we've enjoyed it every time we've done it, but this is as way to kind of add value to you as a speaker and a presenter. So, in celebrating your imperfections, which, some of them may be on the piece of paper you have in front of you, you need to find ways to, kind of, in a nutshell, epitomize yourself, which is why this exercise is called epito-me. And, epitomizing yourself in a way that you say, well, I'm not just one thing, or I'm not just all positive or all negative, we're all a bunch of walking contradictions, we all have juxtapositions about our personalities that make absolutely no sense. But, if you can succinctly find the intersecti...
on between those contradictions and juxtapositions, you have a calling card that you can use in presentations and talks that really gives us a concentrated dose of who you are. It's like a high-speed train version of getting down the tracks to know who you are. Kimberly is going to basically take some of those words,
Yeah, the ones I circled, yeah.
and she's gonna take a few that feel like they are diametrically opposed to each other, and create a story, or, not create a story, tell a story that's a real experience, that basically proves that she's both of those things simultaneously, or maybe a multitude of things simultaneously. And, we don't expect you to have one of those off the top of your head, but you can think about that based on the words that you have, but, in the meantime, she's gonna give us a great example of what it means to be, you know, a contradiction and juxtaposition in the same moment.
Yep! Will you help time me since I haven't practiced this,
Just so that I know that I'm kind of, will you just watch the clock for me, at least, so I know?
Do you want a timer? I think we can actually add a timer. Two minutes, can we put two minutes?
Two minutes on the clock! Two minutes on the clock, so you can see it there, and they can see it there.
Oh, I can see it. So fancy, you guys.
And there you have it. Thank you, booth!
So, I'm gonna tell a story thinking about those words. So, we picked out my words before, and then I thought about the story, but I haven't necessarily practiced it, so, this is similar to how you would do this on your own. So, some of my words were: giving, collage, overthinking, time-warp, there was another one that I can't remember. So... (clears throat) So, I love to collage. I love to make things for other people, and I spent years and years making collages for people, and so, I hit a point a couple of years ago, where I felt a little bit like I'd run out of ideas. Like, I'd kind of made one of my friends, my best friend, I'd already made her, like, the frame, and the this and the that, and I was fresh out of ideas. So, I went to the craft store, and they had these adorable little wooden boxes that I thought would be really cool. I'd never made anything as big as this. So, it's like a little jewelry box, and I got it, and I spent weeks, weeks cutting out pictures and flipping through magazines. I can be very detail-oriented, and I spent all off this time. I love the collaging because I like cutting things out, and I like finding the picture that's just right, and then, like, very carefully, with my little knife, like, making all the little points exactly perfect. So, I started working on it about a month before my friend's birthday, and I realized, in my excitement, and in my search for pictures, that I had amassed a lot of beautiful images, but I had not actually started making the box yet. So, the night before her birthday party, I sat down, and I got all the images, and I began to collage them, and I put all the Mod Podge on, and I was up really late, and I'd made this beautiful amazing box. But, because I waited so long to make it, I spent all my time curating images, the box glued itself shut. So, it's basically a cube you can't open. And so, the wonderful thing about it, even though it's a beautiful box that's not usable, is that it's now become a joke with my best friend and I, because she knows me, and she knows the passion and love that went into it, even though it doesn't work like it should, that now, whenever I give her something, she says, "Oh, I'll put it in the box!" Or, if she gets something new, she goes, "I can't wait to put it in the box!" (timer dings) Time is up!
Wow! (audience applause) And the cookies are ready!
(laughing) Thank you!
That was perfectly two minutes. Thank you for sharing that. And that's a great example of what we're talking about. Like, all those different traits that make Kimberly so unique and so her, all kind of synthesize into one experience. So, does anyone have one like that, that they think they could share? Or, maybe we could even talk through, like, some of those things you may have written down that juxtapose each other? Maybe take it in baby steps like that. Anyone have--
Yeah, I feel like a lot of our stories end up having the juxtaposition, we're just not always thinking about it, right? Sometimes it is the, like, that story came to mind when we talked about this, because it is the perfect storm of the things that make me awesome and the things that make me challenging coming together in an inanimate object, right? Yeah.
Does anyone have anything they'd like to share? Yeah, go ahead.
Will you come up and share it?
Oh, my gosh! Give her a round of applause, Heidi, thank you!
My son's gonna hate me after this.
So, tell us,
Luckily, he's here.
first, I guess, tell us the traits that you're going to use so we can kind of listen for those, and then we'll put some time on the clock for you as well.
Absolutely. I am very organized, and I am very detailed and creative. But, I also like to get, because I'm so organized, I like to put in so much, and like to get a lot of things done. And, I want to have proof of everything I got done, quickly, because I get impatient.
Alright, perfect. So, two minutes on the clock, whenever you're ready.
Okay. Years ago I lived in North Carolina, and I had a very wonderful neighbor. His name was Sam. And, at the time, Sam was in his late seventies, and he was losing a lot of weight. Well, I always would make jokes with Sam. And, I said to him, he said, "Why don't you come visit?" I said, no, no, no, I'm gonna be sewing my son, Jake, some shorts. And, he said, "Well, that's lovely." And I said, when I get them done, I'll bring them over to you. I said, I'm gonna stay up all night, I'm gonna make three, four, five, six pairs of shorts. Well, I'm making the shorts, I'm cutting them out the pattern, and I'm laying them out, and they're a little bit longer shorts, you know, they're not the short-shorts, they're gonna come down to about his knee. So, I'm making up pairs after pairs after pairs, and I'm so excited, I've got five pairs done, it's like one o'clock in the morning, I decide to go to sleep. I wake up the next day, and I'm giving my son the shorts. And, he comes out, and he tries them on, he goes, "Mom, I think that there's a problem." Well, I had sewn the wrong end of the shorts, (Kimberly laughing) so that the legs were this long, and the crotch part was up to here. (laughing) Well, my son was, you know, definitely having a bit of a problem with this, so, I decided, you know, Sam's such a wonderful person, he's losing weight, I decided, I'm not gonna let this go to waste. I'm gonna take these shorts to Sam. (Kimberly Laughing) So, I took them over to Sam, and I said, hey, Sam, I said, I was up all night, I said, but, you know, you and Jake wear about the same size shorts, I got a pair of shorts for you. He still has those shorts. Well, he did still have those shorts for years and years, he came out with the shorts up to here, and, you know, long, and then, just, the legs were only about this high. So, I learned to take a little bit more time, be organized, but don't try to get so much done.
Very good! (audience applause) Give her a round of applause. Take a seat, Heidi. With just a few seconds to spare, so, very good with the time boxing as well. So, as we wrap this lesson up, let's talk a little bit about that. What did we like about that epito-me story that she told?
I thought you very quickly became an authority, and I knew that you knew this story, you knew a lot about shorts, (Kimberly laughing) I love the detail about Sam. It was a really full, formed narrative.
I like that there was a moral to it, so it felt like you could give this as a presentation or a part of a talk you're giving, but you could also use it to motivate people you're working with. It could be a way to almost, like, give manager or leadership speak in a more personal way, if you will. What else?
I like that you couldn't, like, redo it, or, scrap the work. You were like, no, I put in this work, there is a consumer for these shorts. (audience laughing) Like, one man's trash is another man's treasure. And, Sam came to your mind, and you found the perfect shorts for Sam. I think that's so funny, and the fact that those shorts were for my brother, (audience laughing) is really funny. And, I did not know that story until now.
It was revealing, like, that was sort of a detail that we didn't know, was on your list, right? So that detail of, right, finding someone else to give the shorts to also resonated with me.
There was also vulnerability, that Heidi was talking about something that she did wrong. She made a mistake. And, it was, like, a big mistake, spending so much time and making so many pairs of things that didn't fit the intended person, and how she turned that thing around is vulnerable, but, at the same time, very powerful.
Yeah. There's an incredible vulnerability to it, yeah.
Yeah. So, there's all these different lessons and morals that can come out of it, and different ways to apply it. One thing I liked about it, too, is you were physical, you were kind of showing us where the shorts hit on the leg, if you will. But, that would only probably come about by wanting to talk about something that you tangibly, creatively do, right? Your story was similar, and that's what's really cool about, you know, the Super You worksheet, is it's going to force you to put some things on there that you like doing, that you're passionate about, that you literally may use your hands to do. And, when talking about those things, you kind of have muscle memory, and you use your hands, you use your body. And now, all of a sudden, I mean, it would be interesting to see John, he mentioned in another class stand-up paddle boarding, I'm sure if he talked about that, he would kind of do it a little. Who knows? We all kind of do that, right? And so, that's something too, that's another thing to think about when you're someone, we talked about it a little in another class, of wanting to be more physical and use your body in a more expressive way. But, you were very expressive, physically and verbally.