Focus on your story
Your story is the meat of your motivational speech. The fact is that the messages that most motivational speakers deliver are the same. But the critical factor is that they all have a story to tell about themselves. It’s the fundamental building block of any motivational speech. They start from where they began, talking about all the adversity and the circumstances against them in which they worked hard. Due to their determination, finding a good team, getting lucky, being intelligent, or believing in God, they overcome the adversity around them. They also discuss how they were lower than average, like being labeled mentally deficient, physically disabled, or having a reading disability, and they dealt with it all.
They also tell how they overcome their challenges and say, “If I can do so despite my disabilities and problems, you can also, as you do not have any issues like that. It’s got to be easy for you.” Then the audience feels more confident to achieve their dreams. At most conferences and conventions, the motivational speakers come with this same message. A motivational speaker can make people feel good about themselves and motivate them that they can do anything they think of. So, your story is the main content of your motivational speech.
Suppose you are hired as a motivational speaker at an annual sales convention of software salespeople. Then your job is to motivate these people to sell ten times as much software as usual. So here, you must focus on the story you told the people to make them act accordingly. Your story may answer the following questions: What was your life’s problem? How did you overcome it? How did you feel about it? Who are the other people involved in the story? Bring in some dialogue with people to make the story come alive and describe the situation.
You don’t need to be born into a low-income family and explain how you got rich, but you can share any adverse situation you faced in your life and how you overcame it. For example, Donald Trump has some motivational speeches in which he talks about how his net worth was minus a billion dollars at one point early in his career. Then he explains how he came back. So, the fact is everybody faces some adversity in life at some stage. You must isolate from your life what your story is that you can share and represent as a role model because motivational speeches are not primarily about many concepts, numbers, or new information. You must use the power of your story to connect with people emotionally and intellectually; in fact, more emotionally than intellectually.
Explain the struggle process
Next, you must share the actual process by which you achieved what you have today or how you overcame your difficulties. You can share with the audience what changed you and how that change occurred. For example, a media trainer can have the experience of having horrible interviews apart from the best ones. Nobody is naturally perfect, nor is it possible to never have terrible life experiences. As a media trainer, one often overcomes bad interviews or media presentations to go on for thousands of other talk shows and news interviews on national TV. So, if a media trainer could be that bad in an interview and overcome it, so can you. But the process he goes through is of prime importance.
As a media trainer, there is a specific process that one goes through to help people master media interviews and presentations. This includes telling and teaching people how to look good in front of the camera, framing messages and packaging messages with sound bites of the process. A trainer must summarize and explain their learning in simple steps that others can follow. If you have learned things the hard way, but then you systemize them and present them in a more straightforward form for others to act on and succeed in life, you inspire them practically. That’s what the best motivational speakers like Anthony Robbins do. He doesn’t just tell the stories but gives people step-by-step processes they can duplicate.
Focus on what you learned from your experiences and then systematize them and make your message easier for people to follow in a step-by-step way so that they don’t have to learn the hard way. As Warren Buffett, the great financial investor, and manager, once said, intelligent people don’t learn from their mistakes but other people’s mistakes. You want your audience to learn from your mistakes so that they don’t have to spend years of struggle and humiliating experiences. They can be more successful faster. If you need a page to write this down, do it. You can’t explain the process as just saying work hard or get up early because people have heard that 1000 times. Your message must be something unique and different. Something that strikes people, and they think they had never thought of it quite that way. Do it if you need an hour or even a few days to do this. You will not be a successful motivational speaker if you rush this part.
Organize your messages
The next step is to organize your message more systematically. Audiences worldwide, including motivational speeches, business courier training or any presentation, hardly remember the speaker’s two or three main points or messages. Some don’t even remember someone saying the speaker’s style was good or he looked good and confident. So, delivering more than five ideas is simply a waste of time. Try not to convey more than five ideas in a motivational or any other speech. If you want to convey more, you can convey it in your book but not in your speech. If you have tons of great ideas and want to share the things you did to be successful, you should prioritize them.
Write down every idea you would want to communicate with an audience on a piece of paper or computer screen, then put them in priority, and then narrow it down to just five ideas per speech to make it practical and exciting.
Every motivational speaker has a success story to tell. Share your story in a way describing your struggle uniquely. Guide your listeners to reach the level you did with your learning and experiences. Give a layout in the form of simple steps they can duplicate and succeed like you. Your speech must not have more than five messages because the listeners do not remember more than that.