Ask Fred > Career/Work > How can I become what I want to be?

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Dear Fred

How can I become what I want to be? I have always wanted to be a speaker. I am past the age of 60 now. I had to learn everything the hard way. I never visited an english school.

Fred's Response

Never think because of age that you are losing capabilities where you have a passion. I once made a study of people who never became famous until after they had reached retirement age. We know the standard examples—Col. Sanders, Grandma Moses in Painting and Winston Churchill who did not really become the leader he was until the war. Keep your dream alive by taking constructive action to attain it. I believe speaking is the most overrated ability I know of. Often people think that if you speak well you think well. This is not necessarily true. My first advice to a speaker is to always talk to the audience about a subject and never about a subject to an audience. The more I think about the audience the less inclined I am to think about myself. This is the essence of stage fright. Be sure you have something worthwhile to say before you start saying anything.