At a recent workshop, I helped participants to reflect on a 20-minute talk they’d given. I had them summarise their key message in one sentence and then review their talk against how well it supported that one key message. Without exception, everybody trimmed loads of unnecessary ‘fluff’ from their presentation and honed everything in support of their key message.
I’m not hugely tolerant of fluff. When I buy a book about a particular topic, I want to read about that and I’d rather have a shorter book than one with ‘padding’. I listen to a lot of podcasts but I’ve unsubscribed from a lot as they’ve frustrated me. I originally subscribed to them because of their stated aim, but then found that only 10 minutes of a lengthy podcast hit the spot, with the rest either being something random or sounding like the host was fulfilling an ambition to be a radio DJ.
I sympathise as I know how easy it is to lose sight of your intention. There is a time for expansive, creative thinking. And there is a time for editing, for removing things. Sometimes, less is more. Noise detracts.
My challenge to you is this; if you know your mission, what it is that you’re here to do, then do some editing. Think about what you can leave out to let the very best shine through. Just because you can do something, it doesn’t mean you should.