I went to IPSB’s 2012 graduation ceremony on Sunday. It was a small gathering. I arrived with a speech in hand which I had not ‘practiced’ for more than about 12 minutes since writing the thing. But I knew what to say. The speech was attached to a string that went straight into my heart. It would be hard to forget what that means.

My experience was interesting.. I was able to observe the physical changes happening in my body as I waited to give the speech, stood and spoke for 4 minutes, and waited again as the ceremony continued. As I sat through the opening ceremony I felt fairly calm but my throat was so dry it hurt and it was hard to swallow. Of all the times to forget a water bottle.. anyway, I thought I wasn’t going to be able to speak when the time came. My stomach was twisting in knots.

When I was called up to the podium I focused on my breath and moved slowly, with intention. It was uncomfortable up there. As I shared the speech I made sure to look at as many people as possible. I wanted to see them see and hear me. I wanted to speak to each of them.

After I was complete I returned to my seat and observed my body as it began to shake uncontrollably. I started to sweat and my body got cold. This went on for a good 8 minutes or so then began to return to normal. This is an improvement.

I’m grateful for the invitation to speak at the ceremony on behalf of the HHP graduating class. I learned many things about myself through the process of writing and presenting the speech. Although I have completed my program at the school, I am still learning. Every day I am learning and changing and growing.

Many thanks to IPSB.. the school, the teachings, and the people.


Congratulations to my fellow IPSB graduates! We are all destined to do great things.

Graduation and Procrastination

It’s been nearly 8 months since I completed my Holistic Health Practitioner program at the International Professional School of Bodywork in San Diego. Now it’s less than a week until I officially graduate. I was not  ever planning to attend the graduation ceremony. I was content just knowing I had completed the program. But then I received an email, a request to speak on behalf of the HHP graduating class. My first thought was no way! Not only do I not want to go to the ceremony but the last thing I want to do is stand in front of everyone, in the spotlight, and speak for 4 minutes. Not my cup of tea. At all.

Needless to say, I accepted. I can’t ignore the fact that this is a wonderful opportunity for me to face my fears. I am well aware of the fact that I don’t like to be the center of attention. I don’t like to be the one who’s talking while everyone is listening. I prefer to be silent and invisible. Public speaking is something I avoid like the plague. It terrifies me.

But I said yes. I said yes even though I wanted to say no. I said yes because I know I will grow.

This last week, off and on, I’ve been working on my speech. I’ve been remembering my experience during the two and a half years I went to school at IPSB and I’m realizing that I am a completely different person today than I was when I first walked through the doors nearly 3 years ago. I look different, I feel different, I communicate differently, I breathe different. I am a new being. Even thought I’m in the same physical body it has transformed in enormous and fantastic ways!

I am amazed at my own progress. And I am aware of some things that have not changed so much. Here I am, sitting at my favorite cafe with my laptop and my mexican mocha, ready to complete my speech. But, wait, I’m writing a blog post? Yes. This is called procrastination. I am very good at it.

So why has this not changed? Because I work well under pressure? I’m not really sure. I’ve always been this way. I remember starting big projects (as early as 2nd and 3rd grade) the night before they were due. I would get super stressed out and freak out to my parents. Then I would find a starting point (usually with the help of my mom who was appalled that I had waited until the last minute, again!) as this is the hardest part for me. Give me an outline and I have a much easier time. Throw me an idea or concept and I’ll stress about it for weeks!

Once I got started, though, I’d push through. I’d stay up until the early morning hours, until I could hardly keep my eyes open writing, drawing, cutting and pasting. And the amazing thing is that I’d go to school the next day with a fabulous project. I’d get an A and the teacher would praise me or use my project as an example for the rest of the students to see. And I would be half asleep wondering why the heck I couldn’t manage my time and energy better.

My life at IPSB wasn’t any different. I remember starting my business plan for Department of Success a couple of days before it was due (don’t tell Shari!). And, again, it turned out great. I missed a quarter of a point on the whole project. Oops.

So is this procrastination a problem? I guess not. But I’m trying really hard to procrastinate less and prepare myself sooner. Mostly just to avoid the stress I experience the night before the due date. So although I’m doing a really good job of procrastinating right now I think I’ll get back to this speech. My goal : have speech completed by Thursday.