The Best Speech I Ever Gave

This was my speech at the World Domination Summit in Portland, Oregon. It’s about fear, secret identities, and your super power. I’m refining it for my 2013 time frame, but this is the raw, first ever time.

Chris Brogan 720p from Chris Guillebeau on Vimeo.

Can’t see the video? Click HERE

I don’t say this to brag. I say this because my heart feels amazing when I go back and see what happens here. runs on the Genesis Framework

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  • Andra

    Aren’t infant poops the coolest, with all those weird colors and textures? Loved this, Chris. You make it look so easy, as if you were hanging out in your living room with 1000 people. How many years and speeches did it take you to get to that comfort level?

  • Jeff Carson

    I’ve never seen another speech of yours, but I believe it. Great speech.
    (Your musings is powerful stuffs! I will definitely subscribe!)

  • Milind

    I’ve read your posts, followed your tweets. And now I see your sincerity. Thank you for doing what you do.

  • Emily

    It was great the first time, live. And now, watching it again, it brings back memories of such an amazing time and place. Hope to see you there again next year.

  • Jared Latigo

    Very nice! Mike is great guy from the few conversations I’ve held with him, looks like he made an impression of some sort on you as well :D Love the superhero thing, absolutely excellent!

  • Jessica Kihara

    You’re so at home on stage. Very nice speech – almost a stand up comedy act!

  • Tania Dakka

    Nicely done:) I love the superhero analogies – now to find out how to develop articulation and empathy! Oh wait…that’s why I’m reading “The Impact Equation”! (! goes in or out of the “??LOL) Great speech, Batman!

  • swbuehler

    Awesome presentation, although I have to disagree that the opposite of fear is “surrender,” and that perhaps is because I find that there are some places where “giving up” or “surrender” is actually a good thing (and I don’t define “surrender” the way you have here. :-) I should be putting that in my own blog. LOL

    • Chris Brogan

      You’re confusing surrender with retreat. Retreat is perfectly acceptable. Surrender? Never. It’s a matter of deciding why you did what you did.

      • Rory David Hodgson

        I think you’re playing a bit with semantics there. Aristotle raises this distinction, about courage, and how courage can be proper and improper, but the propriety isn’t defined by either going forward or retreating/surrendering/whatever. It’s whether you go up against the right things, and surrender from the right things.

        I think the point you were getting at though was that there’s a certain kind of unhealthy fear that takes over, one that isn’t tied to any actual sensible, rationally thought-through risks. And being able to go up against that anyway is the important thing. It’s recognising that certain “dangers” are real – it’s not like you don’t face the risk of losing money, losing your job, being turned down by a girl, whatever – but also just recognising that it doesn’t matter if they happen, not ultimately. That you won’t die, that you’ll actually grow from it.

        Not that it won’t still sting and suck in the short term. :D Like that quote, “The truth will set you free – but first it will piss you off.”

        I actually wrote a post recently on courage, which you can feel free to skim – the first half of the text is the real meat, the second half is just more personal rumblings:

  • SL Clark

    “Who Am I”, just today I suggested to my wife a concept and she instantly rebelled saying, we’re not THAT. 30 minutes into explaining what she has been *DOING* for our enterprise, her brilliant A HA moment was priceless. Creativity is a super power few realize they possess. My vision of things coalesces with our ingrained talents and I can’t wait to show the world what we’re doing.

  • Greg

    Chris, this is one of the most entertaining talks on the web. I enjoyed your use of super powers from comic heroes to help us all realize how blessed and gifted we truly are. As individuals we each have a lot to give that we probably overlook. Super powers are worthless unless we, as you said, “use them for good”. Very funny, light, engaging and packed with a very powerful and inspiring message. Toy manufacturers use the term “Action Heroes”. I’m thinking sitting on the coach with thumb on the remote probably doesn’t represent a super hero, action hero using super powers… unless that remote can somehow change lives for the good?

    Sir, did you did an amazing job conveying a very powerful message. Thank you.

  • Linda

    I am so impressed. Is there no end to your talents or the things you can whip up when you so choose?
    And clearly there is no limit to your imagination.

    Your words of wisdom hold good for both business and just ‘being’. Too often we see people acting in ways that suggest there should be ‘shame in their game’. They rush things through without really thinking about the impact of their actions on others, let alone themselves. It’s all well and good having super powers, but if all that’s left in their wake is a different set of problems one must wonder what has actually been achieved.

    I thoroughly agree that we should all seek to find our secret super powers, but we must also have a hunt round to find the the best place to put them. We shouldn’t fear waiting a while for – as the 18th century saying goes – ‘only fools rush in where angels fear to tread’ (Pope: 1709).

    Sometimes a little fear can be a good thing. So too can surrendering to other forces – all as long as we have taken time to think things through, at least just a little.

    But you are right, Mr Brogan. That was an extremely good speech and one of many in that genre, I hope..
    Move over Billy Connolly – here comes Chris Brogan!

    With kind regards,

  • Angel Djambazov

    Thank you for the book policeman comment. MGX, Symphony, and I are constantly having that debate. BTW, great energy on this speech.

  • Lon David

    Love the superhero tie in. We connect with those stories for a reason and you’ve done well to spark that thought process.

    Curious though…you propose in the “Untangle” concept that we should reject both criticism and praise. In order to “untangle from other people’s scripts”.

    What about finding a healthy way to accept both of them instead? Is it possible (and maybe more useful) to proactively filter the feedback we receive from others versus an all out rejection?

    Neutral may be more secure, but seems counter to nature. And boring.

    • SL Clark

      A grand idea, but just who’s filter would you propose using? Removing all traces of ego is an epic battle. Ask any Buddhist. ;-)

      • Lon David

        We all view “life” through a filter (lens/paradigm)…just ask Stephen Covey (RIP).
        You get to chose how that lens is shaped…ask any Buddhist.
        And the epic battles are the only ones worth fighting…just ask Batman.

        • SL Clark

          The lens you refer to doesn’t exist, thus all suffering is optional. Chris has done a great deal of work to climb up from great valleys, allowing him to ignore the mountains of criticism and praise. Having spent months engaged with the Tibetans, I will always choose to sit on a tall rock rather than a flat cushion.

          One must untangle from the scripts of others before we can figure out how to extricate from our own.

  • sean carpenter

    Sadly, all I get is this message? “There was an error encountered while loading this video.” Has anyone else had this problem? I have tried to refreash and reload the page

  • Dorothy @ Singular Insanity

    You’re awesome, Chris! Well done!

  • Owen Marcus

    Hi Chis,

    I still have my “Jigsaw” card from your talk. I’ve often thought of myself more as a Super-villan than a Super-hero. There’s something to be said for being familiar with the darkside.

  • marketing expertise

    Excellent work my friend – keep it up!

  • Pam

    Chris: might the opposite of fear be trust. It just seems more where surrender seems less. Good work friend. I like how you find yourself. It’s fun to go on that journey with you. Pam Butler

  • Hardeep

    Great write ups Chris. Keep it up

  • Nina Grenningloh

    It was a speech highlight at WDS, Chris! And your words still resonate with me and spur me on. So, yes: best speech ever!

  • Denise Ellis Stewart

    Wow…worth every minute. Great, great stuff.

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  • igobydoc

    Hiya Chris, I have seen a lot of your material, and I agree with your post title. It is one of the best speeches I have seen you give.

    Gave me a lot to think about… now to decide my super power.

  • Ben Lichtenwalner

    Great job, Chris. Loved it, shared it, will reference many times in the future.

    I’m particularly partial to the service bit. I think this will be among the greatest trend changers in our social generation: the ability for those with a passion to serve others, to do so and eventually make a living at it.

    Thanks for sharing man.

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  • Cathrine

    Love it :-) thank you

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  • Nick Rock

    Whenever you are looking for a different income, I guess stand-up
    comedian would be an option, engaging and entertaining the audience ;-) Not meant in a bad way. Well done @chrisbrogan:disqus !

  • Berni Xiong (sh-UNG)

    Best.Speech.You.Ever.Gave. #handsdown You really should be a comedian cuz! You had me rollin the whole time! Guess what I ate for lunch today? Mac N Cheese!

  • Clay Hebert

    You killed it, brother. One of my favorite memories from WDS.

  • Chris Marr

    Awesome! Loved watching this. I had an idea to do something superhero based for a presentation…you have nailed it. Swipe and deploy.

    Cheers for being awesome.


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  • JosephRatliff

    Nicely done Chris.

    Real as hell, I love it when speakers have notes, but they just “let loose” while they’re delivering what they intend on delivering.

    Good stuff.

  • MaureenEMcBride

    I saw exactly this potential when I saw you in a less focused presentation you gave at TOC in around 2006?

  • rhonda hurwitz

    not at WDS, so loved that you shared this

  • Kim Doyal

    LOVED this Chris!

    One of my favorite parts… (paraphrasing because now of course I realize I should have written it down)- the weirder I get the more people like me!
    I have completely experienced that this year! The more I just trust myself and put myself out there, regardless of what other people may think, the more positive engagement I receive! And I’m having a ball writing because of it.

    Absolutely loved “It’s Not About the Tights!”
    My only complaint? i wanted more. ;-)
    thanks for all you do.

  • Big Awards

    You had me at 31:30! lol.

  • Steven Pare

    That was great, Chris. Thanks for sharing it on your blog for those of us who did not make it to the summit.

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