During NBA playoffs, I always hear a few references to legendary NCAA basketball coach John Wooden (1910 – 2010).  Considered the greatest NCAA basketball head coach of all time,  Wooden once said, “Little things make big things happen.”

Little things make big things happen.

Legendary NCAA basketball coach John Wooden

Calling Dr. Abby

At the beginning of the lock downs in 2020, my speaking business and a separate graphics design business were in quick decline.   I was worried about how I could move forward and feel hopeful while standing still.  

On May 14, 2020 I called my friend, Dr. Abby November (her stage name).  At 75 years old, she is beautiful, clever, and full of energy.  She has PhD in clinical nutrition and is a veteran comedian. 

I said, “Hi Dr Abby! It’s Edna,” and she fires back,  “Edna, would it have killed you to call sooner!?”  I apologize because I haven’t spoken to her since April 2019.  Then I ask her how she is and what she has been doing to feed her creativity during the lock down.  

Virtual Open Mics (Crazy, right?)

Dr. Abby insists that she is not good with technology and that Alexa hates her.  Yet she writes using MS Word AND uses Zoom for virtual open mics and shows.   When she told me about her open mic experiences on Zoom, I thought she was crazy! But I was intrigued.

I decided to do an open mic with Dr. Abby. I learned Zoom quickly but I was nervous and unsure about my ability to perform on a virtual platform. My performance was mediocre but I got through it. I decided to try another open mic and liked it the second time, and the third time, etc. Then I realized how convenient it was to perform from my home office.  From there, I made a goal to do at least one open mic a week.  One little thing, my phone call to Dr., Abby, made bigger things happen.

I made a goal to do one open mic a week.

The Power of One Thing

The following is what happened during the next year:

One year later, I still have the goal of ‘one open mic a week.” And I’ve taken part in over 60 Zoom open mics in the US, Canada, Belgium, Israel, 20 comedy shows, 6 business presentations. Some of these open mics also allowed for music performances so I also had a chance to play some newly learn or memorized piano pieces.

I’ve made new friends and colleagues that that I hope to meet in person one day. I created a presentation on how to punch up your business presentations. And new comedy that awaits some fine tuning.

Btw, if you double my activity, then you have Dr. Abby’s numbers. She absolutely rocks!

Question for You:

What’s the ONE small act or task you could do that would make a difference in a project or your work?

One Last Thing

Speaking of the NBA, All-Star and Utah Jazz professional basketball player, Mark Eaton, was also a successful, award-winning motivational speaker. I met him at a Toastmasters conference in the Fall of 2015 where he gave an insightful presentation about leadership lessons from professional sports teams. I was sad to read that he died May 28, 2021, in Park City, UT.

Here he was at 7’4” and I am 5’1”. I was in a long line of people waiting to take a photo with him. Thank you Mark!

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