Sunday, August 21, 2011

How You Made Them Feel

We live in an age where there are unprecedented opportunities available for us to communicate with each other.

No longer restricted to face to face, letters and phones the internet has produced not only new channels and environments in which and through which to communicate but it has also done away with the tyranny of distance so that at any time, anywhere in the world we can speak with anyone we choose.

And yet, it’s still down to us to put the thoughts and then the words together before they get sent out. It’s still down to us to be brave about what we want to say, and accept responsibility for what we say and do.

So the irony of this blog will not go astray when I say that over the past few weeks I've had two of the hardest conversations I can think of in recent times, and all the gadgets and gizmos in the world did not aid one bit in either of them. It’s ironic also because Communications is my game. I'm a comms junkie who happens to work at it one way and another for a living and for leisure, and it's fair given me a slap on the butt about that communication channel we tend to forget first amongst all the new toys - face to face.

It can be scary, eh? Actually being in someone's presence, talking to them and making yourself vulnerable by revealing what's inside your head.

There's no hiding behind a computer alias or even a Facebook status (which can often seem quite faceless, actually). There's no anonymity and no LOL factor to add which might take away any sting (actually, I loathe LOL and have never used it!).

So, both times, I screwed up my courage after literally sleepless nights and disturbed days, and I went along, sat down and said exactly how I felt.

And guess what? The earth didn't shatter and I didn't lose those people. What did happen were deep discussions that can only happen when we take the courage to jump into that area that perhaps everyone is thinking of but no one goes there first. The result was an enhancing, rather than a diminishing of our relationships, and peace of mind restored.

Give it a try. Take 10 or 15 minutes to go and talk with someone rather than sending them an email. I'm a great believer in the saying that 'People won't remember what you did, but they'll remember how you made them feel.’ Grab back that opportunity to make people feel good by talking to them face to face, over a coffee or a beer or just a desk-perching moment.

That's something that we can't get from emails and Facebook status updates, but that quality of communication is something that we dare not lose, because if we do lose it, we lose part of our humanity.

Have a great week!
M :o)

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Bucket List Quest

Hey y’all, it’s been a while!

Bit of a newsy one this time.

July was very busy with theatre and comedy. Son was working as crew on Avenue Q for the month and so needed the mum/dad taxi service, meanwhile I was gigging every weekend for the OOTS Comedy Galahs around town.

That itself was a wonderful experience. We’d turn up and there would be 19 other comics all ready to go on and do their bit. I don’t know what the comedy scene is like in other cities, but in Adelaide we’re blessed to have a great one. The comics are all friendly and supportive of each other and take a real pleasure in seeing each other succeed with audiences. It fair warmed the cockles of my heart.

Also, one of the greatest pleasures was to see almost all of the female comics there too. We weren’t a token one or two on the bill, neither were we the total lineup which can also be tokenistic if you’re not careful. We were all just part of it, and great fun it was.

I congratulated the producer (and comic/David Tennant lookalike) Mark Trenwith on his great gender mix lineup and like the lovely guy he is he was genuinely dumbfounded. “I just hire people because they’re funny,” he said. Love that guy!

In other news, the Three Stuffed Mums have embarked on a project to compile a book of funny mum stories ‘from the trenches’. We’re asking mums to write in with their story that might not have seemed funny at the time, but you decided to keep it for their 21st, to be included in the Mum Book. The scheme was originated and masterminded by our more business-minded mum Kate, so if you’re interested, log on to and tell us your story.

My exciting news on a more personal level is that Fringe registrations opened this week for the Adelaide Fringe 2012. So, in the interests of crossing another thing off my ‘Bucket List’, I’m embarking at 50 years of age on my first solo Fringe show! It’s called “Sold!” and it will be a mixture of stories, songs and comedy.

Just this week I’ve received from my Musical Director Extraordinaire, Le Monsieur Mike Pitman, the backing tracks and scoring of two of the songs wot I wrote. They sound great, and now all I have to do is rack my singing voice up a notch or three to match the great quality of the arrangements.

The concept of “Sold!” is around those things we get sold on – whether its ideas, things, people. We have to be sold on them in order to justify our investment in them with our time, energy and loyalty. Sometimes we get swindled, but sometimes it’s the best thing that’s ever happened to us. How do you get ‘Sold!’ on something? Tell me by going to the Facebook page for the show - Just click the badge to the right of this blog entry or search for me on Facebook under ‘Maggie Wood – Sold’. Oh and please click 'Like' on the page if you'd like to be kept up to date with my progress with the show.

And that’s probably me for this epistle. The weekend lies ahead as open as the prairies of Oregon (if they still have prairies there), for R&R and general navel gazing before the work week kicks off again on Monday.

To all of you out there, have a lovely weekend and a great week, and remember to look after each other. We’re all we’ve got!

M :o)