Patrick Schwerdtfeger Speaks Out For His Big Dream – Part 2

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In last week’s post,  Patrick Schwerdtfeger Speaks Out For His Big Dream – Part 1, I talked about what it was like hearing Patrick speak for the first time at Social Biz World.

If you haven’t already guessed, it takes a lot of work to make your big dreams happen.

In Patrick’s case he started with podcasting, then a book, then speaking engagements and being willing to travel almost anywhere to speak about his passion: small business marketing online.

He will agree that you have to put in the big hours to earn your successful dream stripes.

Here at 8 Women Dream we focus on the path to making dreams come true, so I had to ask Patrick: How did you get to where you are now?

With any path, there’s usually a really good story. Patrick described a plane trip that gave him time to think and have this epiphany:

You should try and build your entire life around
things you’re good at.

I know most of think we are probably already doing this. For example, I think I’m pretty good at online marketing and can make a pretty necklace. But to really focus on just the things I’m REALLY good at?

Patrick took his idea to heart and made a list of all the things he does well.  He soon realized that it would take more than one lifetime to really focus on all the individual items. Eventually the concept of becoming a public speaker rose to the top of the list.

Was Patrick’s road to becoming an incredible, professional public speaker easy?

Not at all, but I really appreciate his honesty for all the mistakes he made, including one of the worst titles for one of his early talks, “Touching a Younger Audience.”

We enjoyed a good laugh over this, and in Patrick’s defense the title made sense at the time. The presentation he was working on was targeted to community organizations to help them draw in a younger demographic. I have to applaud him for sharing this mistake.

What is Patrick’s BIG dream for next year?

I did pick his brain on that and his answer was great. He told me it’s time for him to find something that will give back to the community and benefit the world.

Needless to say, I truly appreciated Patrick taking the time for the interview, and offering so many insights on his path. I know this will be a benefit as I kick off my own adventure into public speaking.

Here’s a glimpse of Patrick in action –

You can connect with Patrick on his blog at

What are you really good at that you can turn into a successful dream life?

What do you love to spend time doing?

Can you make a living at it?

~ Heather

  • Veronica, I love this as a public speaking tip: “The audience isn’t interested in us, they want to hear our stories, the information we are sharing. When we stop worrying about what they think of us and simply give the information, it becomes a simple thing.”

    Beautiful way to frame it! Love this post, Heather. Omigosh so funny about his talk title… A good reminder indeed to look at our titles twice!

    I really need to consider joining Toastmasters in 2011! I LOVE public speaking and want to do more of it – great way to learn and grow.

    My worst public speaking moment was in 5th grade, on TV. I had won an essay contest about US history and was being interviewed. The newscaster first got my name wrong (she called me Linda and also mispronounced my last name), and then we went to shake hands and missed. ;) Cringe!

    Since that time I’ve come to love being on TV but I was a nervous wreck back then! and SO mortified that she totally botched my name.

    Here’s to improving our skills and getting the message out there in the world!


    • Heather Montgomery, CEO & serial entrepreneur

      Lisa – I can totally recommend Toastmasters! Love the story – nothing that will throw you off more than someone botching your name.

      Hugs – Heather

  • Veronica

    The very first time I was asked to share my story about my life as an alcoholic, I didn’t think I could do it without passing out or throwing up. I was asked to share for 50 minutes, what my life had been, what happened that lead me to seek help and what my life is like today. Ouch.

    I was sick to my stomach and for days all I could think about was what I was going to say. We could not use notes. I woke in the night thinking about my speech.

    A dear friend of mine changed everything for me, she stated, “Dear this isn’t about you, its about the disease of alcoholism and how it effected your life”. OMG, I got it.

    The audience isn’t interested in us, they want to hear our stories, the information we are sharing. When we stop worrying about what they think of us and simply give the information, it becomes a simple thing.

    I always begin by telling a short funny story about something that happened on my way to the conference. Or how at the last conference it was my telephone that went off in the middle of my speech. Anything to lighten the moment and endear the audience to you and you to the audience.
    You have information they want, bring the passion from within, bring you true self and you will shine.

    I look forward to being there one day when you get the opportunity to share the wonderful person I have come to know and love.

    Happy Thanksgiving.

    • Heather Montgomery, CEO & serial entrepreneur

      Thanks for the great reminder that it is all about the message.

      Amazing support as always! – Heather

  • Remy, Photographer & CEO of Cornerstone Creative

    In the 11th grade, I won a speech contest and had to give a 30 minute speech to the Sonoma County Lyons Club on the “Responsibility of Education – school, parents, students.” We could use notes, so that was helpful. I think my 30 mins took 19 or so, and I remember thinking “My god my mouth is moving, but Im just saying words I’m not really speaking” about half way thru. Since that time, I’ve done trainings for employees and that has forced me to lead at the front of a room or in a webinar. Both still make me cringe a bit. I don’t know why. Its not a logic thing.

    Also at the start of my career as a business coach, I was known to vomit before important meetings (ok just in the first 3 months or so) Then I learned not to eat breakfast. xoxo Great post! Rem

    • Heather Montgomery, CEO & serial entrepreneur

      Love the no breakfast tip! Thanks for sharing – Heather