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  • Writer's pictureBritt Barak

A Moment About Appreciation

A loving thank you to thank you-ers, and some honest words about public

My beautiful sister Bell 💜

It’s so easy to not think about it. Or to think that words don’t make much of a difference. But, oh, they do. They do so much. Words can lift one in the air. They can make all the effort worth it.

Christina Lee is one of my favourite people. A part of being fun and kind and talented, she inspires me, with things I don’t even think she’s aware of.

As speakers and friends, we all often attend each other’s talks at conferences. One day, I noticed that after a talk, she very often approaches the stage, just before the speaker steps down, and she would say “great talk!”. Seems small. 2 words and 1 smile. But I remember how it filled every corner of my heart.

Naturally, I had always been complementing speakers when I had the chance. But something about that day made me be even more conscious of it. More aware of that vulnerable Moment, when the talk ends, the questions were all answered, there’s a subtle Moment of silence.. and an inner voice.

Ever since then, I always try to say my thank you to the speaker, as close to that Moment as possible.

Why is this Moment vulnerable?

At droidcon NYC I wanted to speak about MotionLayout, which is a brand new layout, made to create nice animations driven by user input. It’s in alpha, but Nicolas Roard and John Hoford had helped me to explore it. I managed to do pretty advance stuff and planned to share those in my talk at that fancy conference. A few days before the event, it dawned on me that probably most of the community haven’t had the chance to play around with MotionLayout at all yet. Most of them had barely heard of it! what would be the benefit of an advanced talk for them?!

And so, I decided to reconsider my steps and ended up creating an overview talk. I thought it might be a good idea to inspire developers and designers to start experiencing with MotionLayout, to realize that it’s fun, it’s easy, it’s useful, and one can start using it in an existing complex app.

To be completely honest, I was pretty insecure. What would people think of me giving an overview talk, rather than an advanced one? I’m supposed to be a GDE or whatever and talk about advanced stuff and to give deep dives, aren’t I?

I finished speaking. That Moment came, filled with unsure thoughts. It often comes, but that time I felt extra insecure. What did the audience feel about my talk? about the content? about me speaking? What did they think of me and my knowledge now…?

— I know I shouldn’t be thinking these thoughts, but being human takes tole, and sometimes thoughts just come, without us having to do anything about it.

Then, I saw some tweets from a few friends.

Then from people I didn’t personally know

Then I had quite a few people approaching, saying they enjoyed it and are looking forward to try out MotionLayout .

Then, the conference ended, and there were a few tweets pointing that talk out!

OMG. My heart felt so warm. Warmer than the 100 degrees Brooklyn! 💓🌞🌶

Now, it’s time for me to share my gratitude to you, the people who care enough to vocally appreciate.

This seemingly small bites of appreciation are incredibly fulfilling. A word, a tweet, a small act, can change so much on a person’s perception, perspective, heart..

As speakers, we spend so many resources on preparing!

Then, for some of us the presentation itself is nerve-racking (as Dan Kim shares, even in his keynote. I love that honesty and openness!).

Others are left with thoughts and inner voices.

Your small gestures make all the difference!

And how much effort did it take? almost nothing for one person, but it’s a whole world for the other.

This post is not about my talk.

It’s about saying thank you, to anyone who said thank you to me, in any media or in real life. It doesn’t matter how many talks I had given, or how many people said how many words. I honestly appreciate it beyond words, every single time.

Also, it’s a suggestion to anyone else out there:

Never hold back from showing your appreciation, from spreading Love. You matter. Your words and intentions matter. You change the world. One person at a time.

Thank you 💝

Home. Photo by Hadar Franco 💛
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