Mindful Careers Exercise: Interview You!

Time to get creative! Here’s an easy exercise – no equipment necessary, really! – to get you thinking!

Awards season is in full swing. On second thought, awards season is always in full swing. Just when you think the glitzy red carpet parade on the West Coast is over, along comes another ceremony. Examination of the acceptance speeches alone could fill a semester’s worth of college-level coursework. That got me thinking about how we go about honoring our own creativity, waving our own flag, blowing our own trumpet. If you’re struggling with questions like  “who do I think I am?” or “what’s so special about me?”, holding a mock red carpet interview or post awards show press conference is an interesting way to draw your brilliance out into the light.

Here’s a questionnaire to get you talking – to yourself. Be as bold and crazy as you want. All dreams and future accomplishments are in play so why not play with the possibilities?!

PS – talking out loud may also help bring some of your desires to light. It sounds silly at first but if you hear yourself saying something positive about yourself, your abilities, your plans, it helps to drown out the noisier voices that are asking you “why on earth you’d want to be known for that?” and “really, who do you think you are?!”

Pick a ceremony – or make one up – and the award you’re accepting.

Pick a favorite (friendly) interviewer to whose only wish is to give you ample time to speak and due credit for your amazing accomplishments. (Like to joke around? Maybe one of the Jimmys – Fallon or Kimmel – suits you. Into thoughtful introspection? Charlie Rose or Terry Gross fit the bill. Up for a rousing sit-down with a live audience who have questions of their own? You are the perfect candidate for Inside The Actors Studio with James Lipton.

Now, the good stuff – the questions:

  • Why are you being celebrated? What is the award for?What inspired you take this role/write this book/create this amazing product/etc?
  • What have been your biggest challenges in bringing this story/this product/this organization to life? How did you overcome them?
  • What is the greatest piece of advice you’ve ever been given and by whom? Alternately: what’s your favorite personal mantra and why?
  • What advice would you give your younger self?
  • Who have you brought with you to tonight’s event? Alternately, who’s been your biggest champion or mentor? This person can be alive or dead – it’s your amazing imaginary world after all!

I hope you give this exercise a try. It really can be enlightening. Also? It’s just plain fun!



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