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sandraspeech

We are deep into Awards Season now. In fact, the granddaddy of them all (the Academy Awards) is the only big show that remains. As I’ve been watching this endless parade of congratulatory celebrities and ceremonies, a few life lessons have bubbled to the surface. Allow me to share some with you:

  • Confidence is good; arrogance is not. There’s a fine line between someone who is justifiably confident and someone who is a raging megalomaniac. We want our winners to be humble and even a little self-deprecating. Granted, people gave a pass to Shirley Maclaine a few years ago when she ended her “Terms of Endearment” Oscar acceptance speech with, “I deserved this.” Arguably, after decades of good work, she earned that right. Most of us haven’t earned it just yet.
    • Life Lesson: Unless you’re a national treasure, be gracious when you win and let others sing your praises.
  • Prepare a speech. I find it disingenuous when people arrive at the podium and claim that they were so certain they wouldn’t win, they didn’t write a speech. You were nominated. No matter what the Vegas odd-makers are saying, you have a chance of winning. Write down your thoughts, so you don’t get up there and talk about going to Neptune. (See Matthew McConaughey’s Screen Actor’s Guild acceptance speech.)
    • Life Lesson: When you are given an opportunity to prepare for something, do it. With the unpredictability of life and business, we aren’t always given such a luxury. So, when you are, take every advantage to present yourself in the best possible light.
  • Don’t forget to thank your parents. After almost every awards show, one or more winners are quoted as saying, “I forgot to thank my (insert snubbed loved one here).” It’s easy to do, of course. The glare of the lights, coupled with the excitement of the moment, can cause the most polished and prepared person to forget to mention someone important. But, even if you’re not going to write a speech, write this simple phrase on the palm of your hand: “THANKS MOM AND DAD!”
    • Life Lesson: Always remember who brought you to this spot. I know I wouldn’t be here without my parents and my family. And any success that I enjoy is because of them, and for them.

To be continued…