March 20, 2012 in Spirituality
The question came from a new client. She was at the event when I spoke to Albuquerque business owners last month. My topic was “Adapting to Change.” I had opened with a powerful story about a young man who hurt his head in a snowboarding accident. The doctors told his friends and family he would not live through the night.
I tell the story in The Financial Peace of Mind Section of Complete Peace of Mind Training. I use it as an example of how unexpected events often arise because we are resistant to change. As our resistance builds up over time, it takes something dramatic to break through so we can move forward.
In the story, the young man miraculously came out of coma, recovered completely, and had a different personality. His new personality was a fit for my daughter and he is now my son-in-law, the father of two of my grandchildren.
I’ve told the story numerous times.
I always get positive feedback. Some people cry. Others sigh with relief.
On this night, it felt like someone had dropped a stink bomb in the room and everyone was trying to ignore the smell. The morning afterwards, I wrote an article where I speculated that old stories lose their energy and guessed that maybe it was best to tell stories that are more recent. At the time, I wondered if I should put the story on the shelf.
Truthfully, I was surprised at the response. I have a variety of stories I can tell when I speak. In spite of my best efforts to develop several messages that I can memorize and present with flair, I always end up customizing my talks for each event. This makes for a less polished and more genuine presentations. It allows me to connect with the audience before I arrive. Afterwards, people always comment about how what I said resonated with them.
It works so I keep doing it that way – except for this time.
People loved the rest of my talk that night.
They commented on everything I said – except for the snowboarding story.
I remembered all of this.
“I remember the feeling in the room but no one told me anything.”
“I wanted to explain but you were busy answering questions afterwards so I didn’t get to you. One of the members in our group lost her husband and the services were the previous weekend. He died from head trauma in a snowboarding accident.”
I immediately realized that the story was the one for that night. Unknown to me, I had hit upon a topic where the emotions were so raw that people hadn’t processed them yet.
“Oh wow…I had no idea.”
I understood my audience was attempting to ignore the message.
The pain was too great.
I thanked my new client for telling me.
A few days later, my wife told me I had a phone call from someone. The name was familiar but I couldn’t place it.
I took the call.
“Hi, I missed the last time you spoke for our group but I heard you the first time. I need your help. My husband recently died in an accident and he handled all of our tax and financial stuff. When can I meet with you?”
I have that appointment this afternoon.
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