Do You Want to Write a Book?

Do you want to write a book?

Here are three ingredients that you need:

Chris Dao-anis signing copies of the book ‘Living Large in the Little Things’ in 2016.

1. Perspective

When I say perspective, I’m pertaining to your mindset and understanding that:

– You don’t need to be of old age to write a book.

– You don’t need a degree in writing to write a book.

– You don’t need to perfect grammar or become a grammar master to write a book.

You become an author because:

– You want to serve your readers.

– You want to contribute to the community.

– You have a message and you care about how that message will help your audience.

2. Piece

When I say piece, I’m talking about something from your experience and expertise that you ought to share.

Here are questions that can help you identify the piece that you can write about:

– What struggles have you overcome?

– What journey have you gone through that can be relevant to others?

– What body of knowledge have you mastered?

– What skillset have you gained expertise in?

– What area have you studied or done extensive research in?

– What framework have you developed as a result of your learning and experience?

– What strategies or steps have helped you and other people produce results?

– What books do you usually read?

– What are those that inspire you the most?

– What are those that attract you?

3. Process

You need a way to do it, something that is workable.

All these things, plus more are what you can learn at the Aspiring Authors Webinar.

If you want to write a book, join us on February 4, 7-9 pm.

Just go to bit.ly/authorin2022 to know more.

From Shy to Shine, From the Province to Public Stages

My classmates and childhood friends could attest to how shy, silent, and reserved I was.

Who would have thought that this little kid from the little town of Kibungan would become a speaker and trainer?

Transformation is possible indeed!

Oh yes, it’s grace. Plus a combination of actions to cooperate with that grace.

Reading books.
Participating in learning events.
Getting mentors and coaches.
Doing it!

In my book SPEAK: How to Craft and Deliver a Speech or Presentation with Competence and Confidence, I shared:
– why do you need to develop your speaking skills
– how I transformed from shy to shine
– a simple framework you can use to enhance your skills
– how to craft a solid speech content
– how to effectively structure your presentation
– how to deliver your speech with power
– how to connect with your audience
– how to continue honing your speaking competence
– how to develop your confidence in speaking
– and the calling of speakers

It is a gift I am offering to my audience. That includes YOU!

This 2022, allow this book to guide you as you navigate the rough waters of public speaking.

I am honored to receive messages from people who have been helped by this book. They say it’s practical, it’s simple, and the framework works!

My mentor, Bo Sanchez, a top-notch public speaker and author said that if you want to be a speaker, you must read this book.
AVP Nelson Dy, awarded author, speaker and trainer said this, “SPEAK will serve you well as a slim, practical, and helpful ‘field manual’ for public speaking.”

You can get this book for 300 in the bookstores.

But on Shopee, during the remaining days of January, it’s 41% OFF. Instead of 300, you can get it at 175 only. Until January 31.

Get a copy for yourself and your friend.


Don’t let this slip away.
Go to https://shopee.ph/product/316755883/6555238825

Is Your Life Really That Bad?

Life isn’t so bad as we think it is.

Photo by Nina Uhlu00edkovu00e1 on Pexels.com

I don’t discount, in any way, whatever difficulty you are facing. We all have our tough times.

Just like you and me, other people out there are facing a lot of problems especially in this time of the pandemic.

I, myself, was having some challenges as I was starting 2022. I had things to do but I wasn’t really moving forward as I ought to.

I wasn’t necessarily lost but I seemed to be stuck. I was like a car that has to go somewhere but remained parked in the garage for reasons I could not pinpoint.

All I was doing was simply to get me started. I was looking for ways on how to start the engine, get warmed up and proceed driving to the direction I need to go to.

Times can even get tougher than this. And when we experience something negative that leads us to a negative emotion, we at times ask the question, “Is life really this bad?”

To answer this question, let me share with you concepts that I learned in the area of positive psychology. (This is based on the course Positive Psychology I am undergoing with Dr. Barbara Fredrickson of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill combined with some readings on the subject by other authors.)

People have negativity bias.

Negativity bias is our tendency to pay more attention or give more weight to negative experiences as compared to neutral and positive ones.

In other words, negativity bias says that negative emotions tend to scream. They are so loud and strong and we notice them much more than the good ones. When negative events happen, they are often amplified. And that is why you tell yourself, “This is really hard!” At times, you even say, “Life is really hard, it’s bad, it’s full of struggles.”

But if we allow that tendency to persist and propel how we feel, will it be beneficial to us? In most cases, amplifying the negative worsens the situation. When negative emotions scream, we become limited in our approaches and actions.

I’m not saying we should not notice the negative. Noticing the negative helps us stay alive as it often helps us stay away from danger or flee from something perilous. To a certain degree, it’s helpful. But it should go to the extent that the negative already controls and dictates your life.

The Positivity Offset…

On the other hand, positive emotions are more subtle. Why is it subtle? Because positive emotions are more frequent in life. They seem to be usual and ordinary that’s why you don’t notice them as much as you notice the negative emotions caused by negative experiences. (In another article, we will have a separate discussion on how negative experiences translate to negative emotions and how you can derail that negative trail.)

This is the reason why we should be very careful. In times that we tend to be negative, we must remind ourselves that while this negative thing is happening, there are more positive things that are happening.

Positivity offset says that there are more positive things and while they are more subtle than negative ones, when we notice them, we will be able to balance out or offset the negativity in some way. As we recognize the positives, the negatives will die down so we can proceed with life — to move on and move forward.

After all, while life is filled with difficult things and struggles, life is also full of beautiful, meaningful and fruitful things. Life is good still.

That’s why we continue to hold on. To press on. To keep the faith.

Understanding these truths about life helped me spark my momentum for 2022. I hope that this article will help you too.

Whatever difficult situation that you are facing, that too shall pass. Believe that you will figure things out. You will find the solution you are looking for. You will grow through the struggle.

Cheering for you,

Chris Dao-anis

PS: Share how understanding the concepts of negativity bias and positivity offset helped you in any way. (If you are a psychologist and I messed up in some technical explanations, please let me know. I always try to make things simple.)

Announcement: I am giving a webinar for aspiring authors on February 4, 7-9 pm. I will be sharing how you can write and publish your book in 180 days or less. If you know someone who wants to become an author, please let them know. They can register at bit.ly/authorin2022.

A Skill That Cannot Be Ignored

As a young boy, I dreamt of becoming a public speaker, a presenter – just like those priests or politicians who often give speeches, addresses, and presentations.

But I was shy. I was silent and reserved. I would turn red and tend to ramble when all eyes were on me. As a result, I chose not to speak to spare myself from embarrassment.

One day, I realized that this was not benefiting me or the people around me. I had to change.

I began my journey to discover what must be done. When I found the path to develop, I stepped into it and followed it decisively. At first, it was fearsome. It was terrifying. It was difficult. But I kept moving my feet, one foot in front of the other. I ran when I could. I rested a while when needed. And today, I continue to walk that path.

SpeakPhoto by George Milton on Pexels.com

I look back and see how I grew a lot in the process. It was worth the effort. It was worth the courage. Today, I do not say it was fearsome, it was rather fun! Today, I do not say it was terrifying, it was rather terrific. Today, I invite you to take that step onto this path of progress in the field of public speaking.

Accept this invitation and it will change the course of your journey into something bigger, better, and brighter.

Accept this skill, develop this tool you need in life. After all, communicating is not optional, we have to do it every day.

(This is an excerpt from the book SPEAK: How to Craft and Deliver a Speech or Presentation with Competence and Confidence by Chris Dao-anis. Get your copy at messengerofhopebooks.com/speak.)

7 Mistakes I Made in My Book SPEAK

While people say that they’ve been helped by the book, I have to admit that I made some mistakes in it.

No photo description available.

Here are seven of them:

First, the book size.

I know, it sounds shallow but the overall look and feel matters.

It’s a thin book. With 20,241 words, it would have been better to package it at 5″x7″ page size (to make it around 154 pages) instead of 5.5″x8.5″ (at 112 pages).

While some may like its slim feature, it is better if it were a bit thicker.

Second, the back cover.

I cringe when I read it today. The back cover should help sell the book and tell the reader what is in the book in a pithy way.

Other than the well-written testimonial from Bo Sanchez, the rest of the back cover was sloppy. It is composed of four sentences. I’d retain the first one but would definitely replace the other three. I don’t even want to write those three sentences here, especially the last two. They are like clanging cymbals that don’t add value to the back cover.

I’m still thankful though that my hero, Bo Sanchez, gave an endorsement for the book!

Third, the font style.

I was the one who chose it and I used Abadi (a sans serif font). I should have used the same font as the one I used in my third book, Garamond (a serif font).

Fourth, the design of the framework.

In the book, I shared the Public Speaking Skills Development Framework which is the foundation of the entire book. The illustration is on Page 26. While it is not that bad, it is also not that good.

I should have asked a professional to design it. Oh well, I did but it was after the book was printed. It was when I started doing public speaking workshops based on the book that I paid for a designer to create one. Even if it was still my design concept that was followed, his rendition is much better than the first version I made that was used in the book.

Yes, designs matter.

Fifth, no story in Chapter 10.

It was so short.

The book is filled with stories, but not in the last chapter.

Chapter 10 could have featured a story that would close the entire book. Something that would illustrate how a person like me has benefitted from applying the contents of the book. That story could also serve as an inspirational piece so that readers will get excited about implementing their learnings from the book.

Use stories. They work magic!

Sixth, the number of blurbs or testimonials.

I only had one.

The deadline for the printing was tight. The reason was that I announced the book launch even before I finished writing the book. While setting the date helped me complete the book, I failed to add some extra days to request more testimonials. At least three to five testimonials would have been better.

I’m still thankful that Bo Sanchez wrote one for the book, “Want to be a Speaker? You must read this book.”

And on June 25, 2021, Nelson T. Dy, a Gintong Aklat Awardee and one of the Top 100 Filipinos on LinkedIn in 2021, published his review. He said, “SPEAK will serve you well as a slim, practical, and helpful “field manual” for public speaking. It is the next best thing to having a Distinguished Toastmaster by your side, cheering you on and celebrating success with you.”

I will definitely include that in the reprint.

Seventh, I missed elaborating on the statement, “Public speaking is not public reading.

I warned the reader to avoid reading. On Page 65, it says, “Avoid reading your slides. let me repeat that. Avoid reading your slides. Remember, this is public speaking not public reading.”

But maybe, there are exemptions. I could have given one or two instances when reading is totally acceptable.

Also, it would have been better if I explained the statement, “Public speaking is not public reading.” on a wider perspective not just in the context of slides. This might be misinterpreted as well.

The problem actually is not on the reading but on the overall delivery of the piece. How you deliver should make the message come alive whether that involves reading or not.

No photo description available.
Chris Dao-anis signing his books after delivering a keynote talk during the opening ceremonies of the PHALGA Convention in 2019.

Those are the seven mistakes that I made in the book SPEAK: How to Craft and Deliver a Speech or Presentation with Competence and Confidence. (Maybe, I should also rethink the title.)

But amidst all these, I am still proud of what I’ve written in the book.

It has helped a lot and I feel grateful that I have this medium to be of service to people who want to become competent and confident presenters or public speakers.

PS. The book is available on Amazon and Shopee. Or you may order your copy at messengerofhopebooks.com/speak.

Wondering What to Do with Your Christmas Bonus?

You could hear it playing from a distance, “Kaya’t ibigay mo na ang aming Christmas bonus… pati na ang 13th-month pay para okay na okay! (So give us our Christmas bonus… and also the 13th-month pay so it’s going to be okay!)”

But receiving additional income may not mean “okay na okay” if not managed well.

I suggest you look at the example of Jack…

Jack is a young professional, single, and is receiving P9,000 every payday. He is frugal and knows how to save so he is able to accumulate P20,000 in his savings account. He calls it his emergency fund. But he aims to make it higher because his monthly expenses amount to P15,000 and experts say that you need to have at least 3-6 months’ worth of your monthly expenses as your emergency fund. Hence, he needs to have P45,000-P90,000 for this purpose.

“I still have a long way to go,” he said to himself.

In terms of managing his finances, he is much better than his colleagues. He is consistent with his practice of setting aside an amount immediately upon receiving his income.

Every time he receives a notice from the HR department that his salary has been transferred to his account, he immediately opens his account online, transfers 20% of which to another account that he opened for the purpose of saving up an emergency fund.

But he is concerned because, despite his habit of saving up, his emergency fund only stays up to P20,000. He noticed that every time his account reaches the said amount, he would unconsciously look for an item to buy or spend on. He would either buy a new pair of shoes or book a plane ticket somewhere.

One afternoon, in one of his visits to the bookstore, he came across a financial book by Bo Sanchez that mentioned ‘psychological wallet’. As he read it, he realized that he had a relatively small psychological wallet. It is only of the size of P20,000 that is why he unconsciously tells himself that the P20,000 is enough even if he needed and was targeting a higher amount.

He had to increase the size of his psychological wallet to match his needs. He learned that in this world, we don’t receive what we deserve but we receive what we think we deserve. That kind of restates the concept of psychological wallet. It made so much sense to him. He continues to take action to increase his psychological waller through his learnings from Bo’s Truly Rich Club.

One day, he saw a poster of the seminar “How to Make Millions in the Stock Market by Bo Sanchez.” Because of the impact he had from the same great man, he signed up for it and attended.

At that event, he learned so much and his eyes were opened to the world of investing in the stock market. He realized that, since he is employed as an accountant, he doesn’t have time to monitor the market and do quick trades. What he could do is to be a long-term investor with a bit of being active, that is, buying great companies following the cost-averaging method, but also switching some companies when certain stocks hit their target prices and being mindful of their buy-below prices. He learned all these in that seminar. If you would ask him to explain it to you, he would explain it well even to a high school student.

He started investing. He continued saving up.

Today, he has grown his emergency fund and his investments in the stock market. Not only that, he has learned more about personal finance including having the right protection or insurance.

This year, as he receives his 13th-month pay, the allocation is already set to be as follows:

  • 10% for his donation to his church (buti pa sya, he embraced tithing)
  • 30% to be added to his stock market investment
  • 20% will be added for his learning fund
  • 40% will be allotted for the additional expenses he expects for the Christmas holidays (family get-togethers and gifts)

When Jack told me his story years ago, I was inspired.

That moved me to also learn more, grow more, and invest more.

I also met Bo Sanchez in the process and have received so much wisdom, guidance, and practical advice. I still have a long way to go. But I’m thankful that I’ve grown so much compared to my younger self.

I invite you to follow the example of Jack.

Bo Sanchez is inviting you to an immersive experience with him so you can grow more in your financial life while receiving spiritual abundance at the same time.

Know more about this by clicking the link below.

Rejoice Always! Really?!

Rejoice! Give Thanks In All Circumstances…

On December 13, 2020, I was set to give an advent talk to the members of a Catholic community. I have prepared my presentation but I was still not fully settled for my opening lines.

But that morning, while I was going through the readings of the day, I came across this verse, “Brothers and sisters: Rejoice always. In all circumstances give thanks, for this is the will of God for you in Christ (1 Thess 5:16-18).”

I said to myself, “Wow! What a powerful statement. Let me use that in my talk later.”

And so I did.

But in my sharing with them, I didn’t give a theological explanation to that verse. I am not a theologian after all. I am simply a Catholic faithful who many times fail and falter.

As I shared that verse, I also shared my questions.

I asked, “But how do we rejoice in the midst of struggles? How do we give thanks amidst struggles?”

It’s difficult, right? You might be nodding your head right now.

It is difficult to say “Thank you, Lord” when we are facing difficulties.

For me, as I young boy, I’ve been asking these questions.

“Why are we struggling?”

“Why are we poor?”

If you were one of my childhood friends, you would know that I would walk to school with my worn-out slippers.

I would embrace my hungry tummy every recess time because I had no money to buy some snacks. If my classmates would say, “My favorite subject is recess,” I couldn’t relate. My gut feeling would not get it. I had to use my intellect to understand that statement.

While the other kids in the neighborhood would spend their weekends running and playing around, I would have to go with my parents and siblings to the farm to harvest palay, till the soil, or plant rice. And so, I would enjoy those few weekends all-out playing when the works in the rice fields were done, which rarely happened because the truth is that farm works are never done. People would comment that we were hardworking. I’d say, “Maybe, we were. It was a choice with no other option. We had to or we would starve.”

I had experienced challenging days.

I had my own share of problems, challenges, and frustrations.

For sure, you also had your tough and tougher days.

And with the Covid-19 pandemic, we have been challenged. We are being challenged.

Going out and going around were restricted. More and more people were getting sick. People were losing their jobs while others are closing businesses.

We were forced to adjust, to shift, to pivot.

Amidst all this sad news, it is also during these times when there are new discoveries in the field of science and health, there are new jobs and new ways of doing business.

Do you see them?

Do you recognize the blessing?

What is one struggle that you had and how did you overcome it? Big or small.

Yes, ponder on these questions.

As you do, you will realize that in the midst of struggles, you can still rejoice. In the presence of difficulties, you can still give thanks.

In fact, our rejoicing and thanksgiving are even more amplified when there are struggles. Because with them, we can appreciate more how blessed we are.

Do you agree with this?

To you, what gift have you received during this pandemic?

Share it in the comments.

3 things that struck me in Romans 1:1-7

You are called!

Three things that struck me about the first seven verses of St. Paul’s letter to the Romans (1:1-7):

1. HE WAS CLEAR ABOUT WHO HE IS

– Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ (v1)

– an apostle, called and set apart for God’s Good News (v1); {he encountered Jesus on the road to Damascus; in his time, gospel signifies good news which means victory; [Jesus’ victory]}

2. HE WAS CLEAR ABOUT THE ONE HE SERVES

– Jesus Christ (v1), the Son, born in the flesh, a descendant of David (v3), the Son of God (v4); {the Son of God, made man, to share our condition, who died and resurrected; through him, we received grace and mission for people to accept the faith}

– God [the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit] (v1, v4, v7)

3. HE WAS CLEAR ABOUT THE NEWS HE AIMS TO SHARE

– (God’s Good News) the very promises he foretold through his prophets in the sacred Scriptures (v2)

– regarding his (God’s) son, who was born in the flesh a descendant of David (v3) and has been recognized as the Son of God, endowed with Power, upon rising from the dead, through the Holy Spirit. (v4)

– Through him, Jesus Christ, our Lord, and for the sake of his name, we received grace, and mission in all the nations, for them to accept the faith. (v5)

– You are elected of Christ, you are part of them [the nations, to accept the faith] (v6, 5)

– You are beloved of God, called to be holy (v6)

– May God our Father, and the Lord Jesus Christ, give you grace and peace. (v7)

+++

Father God, help me.

to understand who I am

to understand who You are

and to understand what I need to do.

Fill me with Your grace. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

+++

How to Write a Book FAQs with a Book Writing Coach

Do you want to write a book but don’t know where to begin?

Maybe you are asking these same questions I asked often.

Here are some of them:

1. What did you do before becoming an author?

2. What are the struggles that you faced?

3. What is your reason for writing books?

4. What can I write about? How can I choose my topic?

5. What is the minimum/maximum number of words for a book?

6. What does it mean by traditional publishing? Self-publishing?

7. How can I write a novel?

8. How about proofreading/editing?

9. How can I look for publishers?

10. What is the common mistake that aspiring authors make?

I answered these questions in this video: https://youtu.be/MFxvpO4KM9s

Here’s the link mentioned in the video: http://bit.ly/reachmorereaderschallenge

How Can I Sell More Books?

Some years back, times were tough(er).

Projects were down and sales were low.

I still thank God because I could eat three meals a day and pay for the basics.

But my insurance premium was due and I had no extra money to pay it. I was already thinking of just letting it lapse. But that would be a problem. I said, “I’ll just think about it later.” Not a really good strategy.

One day, someone asked me to help his group. “There was a bit of misunderstanding. We need to come together again, reunite for the mission, and do the work as one. Please come and speak to the group.”

I went and delivered the best piece the best way I could based on their context and circumstance.

After my talk, the one who invited me handed me an envelope and also told me a number.

I asked, “What’s that number?””Oh, that’s the number of copies they ordered. They are buying your book!”

I was smiling outside and crying inside because I did not expect that much of a sale on that occasion for that audience. But the total sales amount was more than enough to cover my insurance premium, and I even had some extra to cover other essentials on my list.

One thing is for sure – God’s grace was at work at that moment.

The second thing is that I was doing something that give value, that also moved them to decide and say, “I want your book.”

At that moment, I was reminded of the truth that you can sell copies of your book to people who need it and want it, and you don’t have to force them to get it.

You just have to offer it, but before you offer it, make sure you deliver real value that helps solve their problems and address their concerns.

I continued to learn more about how to sell more books and help more people.

If you are an author (or an aspiring author) and you want to reach more readers, I have prepared a FREE 5-Day full-value training called Reach More Readers Challenge to help you do just that — reach more readers and impact more lives.

This will kickstart on June 14, 2021 (8pm GMT+8).

To know more about this, go to http://bit.ly/reachmorereaderschallenge.