Sunday, May 29, 2016

Redefining Success

It's been a pretty  incredible week. Long story short, I was kindly asked to give the closing talk at Maine Medical Center’s Neuroscience Institute & New England Rehabilitation Hospital of Portland's Ninth Annual Stroke Conference on Wednesday, May 25th.

Long story long, I've figured out how to deliver the presentation here in some kind of meaningful format. This link is a placeholder for video to follow in a few weeks (now ready here). Sorry to those of you who prefer a self-contained, emailed version of the blog. That simply wasn't possible this time.

Some instructions:

  • Go to the Presentation Page
  • Click here to download the attachment (this will most likely only work on a computer, not a phone or tablet).
  • Click the NOTES tab at the right side to see my script (I've made the text  as large as I can).
  • Try to read along with the images and/or videos (using the Next arrow at the bottom right)and imagine that I'm delivering those words to you with great aplomb, comfort, and humor.
  • If a video doesn't play automatically, try clicking on the still (though there actually aren't that many videos; most are still images, and I've labeled the videos as such).
  • You can expand the presentation to full screen with the double arrow button to the right of the progress bar, below the slide)
  • There's also an "embedded" version of the presentation below, which should be just as navigable.
While I was nervous to undertake this challenge, I'm proud to say that I think I pulled it off quite well. For one thing, it's mostly just my story and a retread of my "Greatest Hits". And the response was fantastic. Despite being the end of a long day, the turn-out was good, and I got great feedback from friends, strangers, and family alike. Mind you, this was about as welcoming an audience as you could ask for: stroke and other brain injury survivors, medical professionals (many of whom cared for me at the rehab), and Jamie and the boys (you'll see some slides that are pretty specifically for their amusement.

No, I'm not a showman, but I managed to achieve my goal of balancing memorized portions with talking off the top of my head (often while wandering the stage with my wireless lapel mic), and reading verbatim when I had the words written just right but didn't quite trust myself to recall them. Technical glitches were kept to a minimum, except when I accidentally closed my PowerPoint presentation and had to find it again, and when I tried talking over videos that were much louder than I'd anticipated. 

The center portion of my audience ( should've taken a panorama and focused)

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