He was addressing the senior class, but much of what he said I needed to hear.
Words matter. Words project confidence or defeatism.
Michael told the senior class, don’t say “If” because “If” breeds self-doubt.
Instead, say “When.”
Michael’s father would say to him, “When you play football.” “When you go to the NFL.” “When” projects conviction. “When” projects the next sure thing.
Don’t say “Hope.” “I hope to do this.” “I hope to do that.” “I hope” is rife with vacillation and hesitancy.
Instead say, “I expect.”
Michael admitted he was scared to be addressing the crowd. But he encouraged everyone to work scared. Play scared. Do whatever scared.
Attitude matters. It’s the only thing we can control.
Take a risk. Try a new thing. Stay open. If someone offers you a job, an opportunity, and it feels right, take it, even if you’re not completely prepared. Then make sure you learn the ropes fast.
So following some of Michael’s advice, here I go.
When my first novel is published, I expect to be overjoyed at its completion. When my first novel is published, I will be content, knowing the book is in another person’s hands and life. When my first novel is published, I expect to connect with new people in a myriad of ways. When my first novel is published, I expect to be well into writing my second one.
I now expect all of these pronouncements to come true. 🙂
If you’d like your own pep talk from Michael, try this: