Last seat on the lifeboat…Who wants in?
If someone asked you this question, what would you say? What could you say about yourself in 30 seconds that would convince them to give YOU the coveted seat?
I recently attended a writer’s workshop at Blissdom, a women’s blogging conference here in Nashville where the instructor asked us that very question. It didn’t sound as scary at first. She originally asked what our elevator pitch was. I had perked up when she said that. I knew how to do that, I was a publicist. I could do this right? Some of the women didn’t know what an elevator pitch was so I explained, “Pretend you only have an elevator ride, the time it takes to get from one floor to another to make your case for your product, service, etc. What would you say?”
The women still looked a bit like deer in headlights.
“Think about it this way,” the instructor explained, “If we were all on a boat that was sinking and there was one seat left on the lifeboat, what would you say about yourself to convince the captain that you are the one who needs to be spared?”
OK, maybe I couldn’t handle this. I come up with pitches all the time for our authors and our books, but for myself. I sat there in silence as the women, all older than me and most of them moms, said things like they needed to live for their kids or for their husbands. I don’t have any kids. I’m not married. What could I say that would convince someone that I needed that seat? In the brief 5 minutes I was thinking about my life in a way I never had before I went through all the things I want to do, places I want to go, people I want to meet, and the person I want to be. I’ve always been a person with a plan, seeking to live a life full of purpose and passion, so why didn’t I have any good reason why I should be on that boat?! Then it came to me.
I’m not done yet.
That moment was like a kick in the butt. I’m not done yet. I have so much I want to do. I shared my realization with the room and the women began to echo the same feelings. No one is done; we haven’t crossed that finish line yet. We have so much to explore, learn and give. No matter where you are in life, what you’ve accomplished or what you have left to accomplish, now’s the time to do it. Now’s the time to fight for that last seat in the lifeboat.
I think I get so caught up in the daily routine of busyness that I forget to really live and live with purpose. We all have things we want to do in our lives, big goals and huge dreams. Are we living that way? I wasn’t. I was complacent. Daily now I remind myself, I have so much more to do, I’m not done yet.
What would your elevator pitch be? How do you remind yourself each day that you aren’t done yet?
By day Jacklyn Johnston is a publicist for Tommy Nelson, Thomas Nelson’s children’s division, a dream job for any self-proclaimed bookavore. By night her routine has recently consisted of eat, run, sleep repeat as she is training for her first marathon in May. Hailing from Pittsburgh, PA, after a detour in Atlanta, she finds herself living in Nashville, Tennessee. Stop by her new blog at www.jayewalking.com and find her tweeting like a bird at www.twitter.com/jayemarie