A vision is not just a picture of what could be;
it is an appeal to our better selves, a call to become something more.
– Rosabeth Moss Kanter
Imagine what your audience sees when they are with you.
Imagine their vision of you.
Of what you’re doing.
Of the other people with them.
Of the world around them.
Is that vision clear? Is it fuzzy? Is it partially in focus? Is it focused?
Now, imagine that you and your Magic are a type of glasses for your audience.
You’re a spectacle!
You’re a way for people to see better and to protect them.
What happens when you start envisioning yourself as a pair of eyeglasses that someone else sees through? There’s a mighty obligation and a responsibility and a demand in that type of power.
To continue with my eyeglasses metaphor, I want you to start imagining that you are bending the light that enters your audience’s eyes (what other people think is reality) so that they see precisely what you want them to see.
What do you and your Magic and your message have to appear like in order for that to happen?
Many of you already know that I’m a fan of the Persian mystic and poet, Rumi. Here’s one of my favorite quotes from him:
Magic makes a straw a mountain by artifice;
again, it weaves a mountain like a straw.
It makes ugly things beautiful by means of sleight;
it makes beautiful things ugly by means of opinion.
The work of magic is this,
that it breathes and at every breath transforms realities.
So, how do we, as Magicians, communicate a vision that others want to adopt, agree with, and share?
THE FIVE STEPS TO BECOMING THE VISION OF YOUR AUDIENCE
STEP ONE. You must be the center of what’s going on (or move your audience’s attention to you so they think you’re at the center of what’s going on). Magic reaches out and grabs your audience by their hearts and souls and minds. It is not passive (although it can work its “Magic” in very subtle ways.) You must set your intention to be the center of attention first and foremost. Without that intention, your efficacy as a Magician is precarious, at best, and doomed to failure, at worst.
STEP TWO. Imagine out loud with your audience. Tell them a story. Let your audience share your wonder, ideas, and dreams with you. Your audience is not filled with mindreaders. Life is not filled with mindreaders (although many of the people you encounter like to fantasize and delude themselves into thinking that they know what’s going on inside you). Once you realize that you must share with them, you will stop taking for granted that your audience is going to go on your journey with you.
STEP THREE. Get your patter (your script, elevator talk, pitch) down cold. You can’t move them if they don’t understand you. You can’t stir them if you they don’t process what you’re saying. Every word you utter as a Magician is important. Every single word. It was Mark Twain who wrote: “The difference between the almost right word and the right word is really a large matter—’tis the difference between the lightening-bug and the lighting.” If you’re going to the lighting for your audience, then you have to select your script with the utmost care. After all, if you don’t care, why should they? (Hint: This step means you actually have to rehearse your Magic.)
STEP FOUR. Be a magnet for your audience. Your job, as a Magician, is to be compelling. To attract them to see what you want them to see. To influence them so they see the wonder you are gifting them at each turn. Part of the secret of being compelling is to be entertaining. It’s not enough to be magical; you must be interesting, amusing, and different.
STEP FIVE. Guide your audience. Have a beginning, middle, and end to your magical display. Have a point (or else you’re pointless). Give your audience something to connect with, be anchored to, and be excited about. Hey . . . Here’s an idea . . . How about giving your audience something to live for? Remember, of course, to give your audience the time they need to listen to, absorb, and act upon what you’re saying and doing. Finally, you’re audience wants you to succeed.They are anxious to be moved by you. They are eager to learn from you. They are wishing that you’re Magic is real. Don’t disappoint them!
When you start paying attention to what your audience sees and experiences with and through you, your Magic truly begins to shine and take on a power like never before. You are the eyeglasses for those around you. Keep your lenses clean and deliver a sharp image.
Now go out and make it a magical week!
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