Golden Visions and Associates | Coaching for Success
Thought for the Week
Your Success Thought for the Week of September 15, 2010
Being A Celebrity
By guest contributor Brad A. Ward, MD

As Andy Warhol once said, we all have our fifteen minutes of fame in our lives.  We also have our brushes with famous people and events.  With the advance of technology, anyone can end up on Twitter or YouTube and be broadcast on the internet worldwide in an instant. 

For a true celebrity, this means free publicity, which could be good or bad.  Just recently, bad behavior has made the news on the part of Mel Gibson, Paris Hilton, and Lindsay Lohan.

Recently, I was at a Pronghorn fund raising event and had the pleasure of meeting and talking to the actor Sean Astin.  His most notable movies are The Goonies (filmed in Astoria, Oregon), Rudy, and most famously as Sam in the Lord of the Rings trilogy. 

A fact I didn't know was that his mother is the actress Patty Duke, and his adoptive father is actor John Astin, most notably of The Addams Family.

I found Sean to be delightful.  He was very warm and seemed to really enjoy talking with my wife and me.  He attracted a lot of attention, but took it very casually and appeared to make an attempt to converse with everyone around him. 

I suspect this treatment could really overinflate one's ego, but I never sensed that about him; in fact, he seemed almost surprised anyone recognized him.

During one of my sessions with Ann, I told her about the encounter with Sean.  Always insightful and probing, Ann asked me what I learned from this meeting.  After some thought, I realized that there was something to be learned from meeting Sean.

First of all, when I meet someone, do I go out of my way to be warm and conversant? Or do I just go through the motions of the pleasantries.   How engaged am I in the other person or I am looking around for more familiar faces?

Secondly, Sean is an actor and may have an innate ability to appear to be warm and engaged yet wanting to be somewhere else (although I doubt this.)  Yet, don't we all have the ability to be actors and appear interested in those with whom we are talking, even if we don't feel up to it at the moment? 

The old saying is true: you never get a second chance to make a good first impression.

Lastly, when we are around a group of people, are we being observed by others more than we think we are?  Is our body language being scrutinized or our vocabulary being analyzed by those around us?  I would suspect that celebrities adapt to this to some degree, but who hasn't heard about encounters with famous people where people come away with bad impressions of their idols.

In summary, I would encourage you to make an effort to be like Sean Astin was with me when I met him.  When you meet someone new, be warm and engaged, consider yourself a "celebrity" trying to give a good impression with your smile, firm handshake, and engaging personality.

If you are challenged with this concept of 'creating a first impression of warmth and engagement,' begin with taking small steps.  Hire one of our coaches to guide you.  At GV&A, we have a variety of skilled, talented, certified coaches to serve you. It can be fun and easier than you think to attain the success you are after.


To see more of my published articles, including '"Falling In Love...With Yourself," go to:

Golden Visions & Associates, Coaching for Executive and Leadership Success

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Permission is granted to either reproduce copy or distribute "Your Success Thought for the Week" for Sept. 15, 2010 as long as this copyright notice and full information about contacting the author is attached. The author is Ann Golden Eglé, GV&A, Golden Visions & Associates, Coaching for Success, 541.385.8887, PO Box 1696, Bend, Or. 97709.