“What inspires you?”
“Why do you want to do what you do?”
“What is your ultimate goal in becoming a motivational speaker?”
“Are you doing this because you’re blind?”
Within the past few weeks, I have gotten each of these questions at least twice. They inspired me to write a post about my reasons for choosing this path, hopefully addressing some of the curiosity surrounding it in the process. So, without further ado, I give you…
The Top Ten Reasons I Am An Aspiring Motivational Speaker
I have tried to list these in order of what I feel most passionate about, and that was really hard, because I feel equally passionate about everything below. Still, there are the little things, so I chose to put those at the end of the list here. They are fun, they are important, but they are not really life changing to anyone save me.
10. I would love to travel.
I would love to visit more of the fifty states. I would love to visit more countries. If I could both travel and work as a motivational speaker, I swear, I think I would cry. The entire experience would be so breathtaking and enriching for me. I love learning about new places, new cultures, new ways of life. To travel would be to learn, and to learn is to grow, and I am all for that. Besides, it would be fun! I mean, think of the selfie opportunities alone!
9. I love to talk.
I laugh as I type it, but let’s keep it real. If a motivational speaker did not love talking, that career would really blow. I love talking. I love explaining my thoughts to people. I love expounding upon those thoughts. I love sharing what I have learned and gone through in my life. I love encouraging people and making them think. To build a career out of doing that would be an utter dream come true.
8. I would get to meet so many amazing people.
As a motivational speaker, I would, ideally, be traveling a lot, either within my community, within my country, or possibly even to other countries. I know I would meet so many incredible people who would touch my life in such amazing ways. I might get to meet blog readers, podcast listeners and Youtube viewers. I might get to shake hands with or hug the people my words have touched. I would get to learn from others in this field. I would get to work for and alongside some truly remarkable individuals. The prospect alone, while rather distant right now, is so incredibly exciting.
7. I want my daughter to see that dreams, even lofty ones, are possible.
My child is my world, and in the world we all live in, dreams are often seen as unattainable things. Society portrays a dream as a bar too high for us ever to grasp, and so individuals tend to settle for whatever will bring them close to that dream without ever quite making it there. In many instances, there is little choice. But when there is a choice, I want to show my little girl that it matters. Choice matters. Effort matters. Not every path is typical, but each one is beautiful, and each one can ascend to a dream so long as we keep walking it.
6. I want to be heard.
As a blind individual, I have been told more than once that society might not be perfect, but that I should be grateful for what I have. What those people don’t realize is that I am so grateful for all I have, but that does not mean I will not still push for equality.
I want the world to look my way. I want it to listen, and not just about blindness. I want to share my story, comprised of so much growth, most of it not blindness-related at all. Hearken, world, because I am one of the voices who speaks for many. To hear me is to hear all of us.
5. I want to help blind individuals rise above the limited expectations society has placed upon us.
As a blind individual, when I hear the words “you can’t”, my kneejerk reaction is to respond with, “watch me.”
I am a blind woman in a sighted world. By the very nature of that truth, I am an outcast. I am an outcast because this world was not built for me or any of my blind peers. From the start, we are told we should not, or we cannot, or we are not. The world does not try to boost us up. It seeks to build walls around what we can do. It tries to place labels upon what we should be. It seeks to dictate how we are seen.
For every blind individual out there who has heard the words “you can’t”, I want to break down a barrier. I want to rise above the limitation’s society seeks to place upon us. Too many believe we simply should not matter because our blindness does not affect them. We are a minority, and they are oft times deaf to our voices. I want to be one of the voices that refuses to be silenced or ignored. We may have visual limitations, but we, as people, are limitless.
4. I want to bring people together.
I love connecting with people. I find a deep fulfillment in allowing them to glimpse my world, because it makes me feel closer to them in the time I have with them. In a world filled with its share of fractured moments, I want to be someone who can bring listeners together. I know that there are times when a sense of belonging, even for a few moments, can carry the strength to eradicate months of crushing loneliness. If my words can give people the courage to face another day, then I will never stop trying to send those words as far as they can go.
3. I have a deep thirst for enriching experiences that will further my personal growth.
I seek to draw the growth from every experience I find myself in. At such an early step down this career path, standing up to speak to even fifty people would be so incredibly profound, the thought alone is rather like gazing up at the sky and daydreaming about walking on a cloud. Each step I take toward that cloud is an experience I can learn from. The growth that shapes me, the lessons I learn and the struggles I survive are all a part of my story. I am dedicating my life to sharing that story, which means every moment of every task becomes a moment that enriches my life. I know my growth can enrich the lives of others, and that knowledge will always keep me thirsty to better myself as a person. For me, for you, for us as a community of equals.
2. I want my listeners to know someone hears their call.
Through the darkest moments of my life, through abuse, assault, shunning, to losing a parent at thirteen, depression, self-harm and the suicidal years that followed, there was not a single soul to turn to. I had no one to say to me, “I have been there, and I understand. You will rise above this, for you are beautiful, and you are strong.”
When you are clawing your way through darkness’s like the ones I have survived, sometimes, the thing you need most is merely to know you are not alone. For the young, the fully grown, the elderly, I want to be that rock they can lean on when there is no one else to bear that weight, because I know from experience how much it really does matter.
1. I want to educate the world about blindness.
What it is, what it is not, how to interact appropriately with a blind individual, how we function from day to day in areas that may utterly perplex many, etc. This walks together with reason five, but they are not synonymous, because in this instance, I do not speak of proving we are are worthy of being seen and heard. In this instance, I speak of informing the uninformed and the misinformed about the day to day. The how tos, the dos and don’ts, and all that goes along with educating those who want to learn but have had little to no opportunities to ask.
I want to remove the blinders from the eyes of those who may not even be aware they are wearing any, and if I can make a difference in a single mind with one of my blog posts, podcasts, Videos or talks, then this seedling of a career has already been a glowing success.
And there you have it, my Treasures. The top ten reasons I am an aspiring motivational speaker. Thank you so much for reading through this post. It was a lot of fun to write, and it means so much to me that you were interested enough to spend your time here. If you have any questions for me, or if there is something you would like me to write about, please feel free to contact me, either by using this site’s contact form, by sending me a mention on Twitter with the hashtag #TalkAboutItRena or by emailing me at SirenaRayLind@gmail.com.
Until next time, my Treasures, I bid you a fond adieu.