Due to a rescheduling guest, I was recently had step out of my comfort zone and “freestyle” an episode on The MS Gym Podcast. It was something I had encouraged to be in the past, but I didn’t feel I had enough experience as a solo contributor, and, quite frankly, I didn’t have the guts. Episodes are typically around 30 minutes. How was I going to talk off-the-cuff for 30 minutes?!!
The good news is, it didn’t take long to find a topic that I have and still do struggle with at times, and, after years of observing other MSrs beat themselves up over it, I felt comfortable my two cents may resonate with someone. Even if it was only person, I was cool with that.
The topics was about mobility devices (canes, walkers, wheelchairs, scooters, etc.), and how are thoughts about them may be holding us back. It’s something I’ll be covering in the book I’m working on and that I live with, so it’s familiar territory.
I began by typing up what I was thinking, then I could just read it aloud for the recording. After looking over it, I thought I had at least a solid 20 minutes. Perfect.
I began the recording, and surprisingly enough, things were moving along quite smoothly. Heck, I was starting to feel downright comfortable in my own apprentice-level skin. I got to the end of the recording, waited for it to convert to an audio file, clicked on it and when I saw the length of the recording my heart sunk. It was only a little over 10 minutes! And, that was without editing which typically trims off some time. What now?!
I warned the marketing director of my micro-episode and he gave me the thumbs up. Really? Thankful that he was okay with it, I moved forward, making sure to include in the episode description that it would be a “quick shot of inspiration”. I hit the “Publish” button, crossed my fingers and went on to share it on Facebook and Instagram as I typically do with all the other episodes. Then, I walked away and promised myself I wouldn’t look at the download numbers, likes, or comments until the next day. Honestly, I was too afraid to look. I was preemptively embarrassed about my lackluster attempt and certain of the lack of response that would follow. In my heart, I knew the content was solid, but was it enough? Who knew interviewing other people would be so much easier than simply riffing into the mic? What had I done?
The next morning, instead of going straight to my social media news feeds, I made breakfast, did some laundry, and purposely avoided looking at any feedback. Procrastination at its finest.
I couldn’t put it off any more. It was time to face the music (sad, somber, tragic music) and see how it was all shaking out. Through squinted eyes and gritted teeth, imagine my surprise to see the downloads were flowing and, more importantly, the verbal feedback from listeners echoed the “This totally resonated with me!” sentiment. As one listener commented, I had “hit a nerve” in the MS/disability community. It’s only four days later and the positive feedback continues.
Who knew an ill-planned, yet heartfelt 10 minutes of riffing on mobility devices would have such a ripple effect. It’s truly all I ever want from any content I ever put into the social media-sphere. To make a difference and to let others know they’re not alone in their private struggle of living with MS.
If you have a spare 10 minutes, let me try to change you mind about using mobility devices. Click on the graphic below go straight to the episode.