This Ole Boy Down Home
Dad has always been known as someone with a gift of humor and the ability to tell a great joke to a huge audience. One of my joys in life is to watch Dad tell a favorite joke, because many times he struggles not to crack up before the punch line. (You know you are gifted when you can make yourself laugh!) When Dad was starting his speaking career he created a fictional character called “this ole boy down home,” who was the brunt of all of his jokes. People loved the character and he could rattle off dozens of jokes about “this ole boy down home.”
Then one day Dad was speaking for a group (this was before he was easily recognizable) and before the day began he heard two people talking. One asked who Zig Ziglar was. The other said that he was sure he would like listening to Zig because he was one of the funniest speakers he had ever heard, and he had a series of jokes around a character called “this ole boy down home” that was hysterical. Hearing that conversation changed everything for Dad.
Dad made a decision that day that he didn’t want to be known as “the funny speaker” who created “this ole boy down home.” He wanted to be known as the difference-making, life-changing speaker that gave people hope and encouragement. Yes, that was the day that “this ole boy down home” became a footnote rather than the feature. Humor was no longer the theme, but rather the tool to get everyone to listen to the life-changing words of wisdom that he is famous for.
Imagine for a second if Dad had had settled for the laughs. You wouldn’t be reading this blog.
Question: If you heard two people talking about you, what would you be known for?
In 2009, what do you WANT to be known for? Make it happen! Just start.