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|Speaker to Share an Amazing Message at Breakfast With the Best|
|Published Friday, September 8, 2017|
Executive leadership and public speaking often go hand in hand, something Paul Boynton has embraced over the course of his 35-year career holding administrative roles at health care and human services nonprofits. In 2008, Boynton reflected on his various speeches and realized he had collected quite a bit of material with common themes built around optimism and self-responsibility, prompting him to write and publish his first self-help book “Begin with Yes” the following year. The book was an instant success, selling over 23,000 copies to date and attracting nearly 2 million followers on Boynton’s Facebook page.
“I wanted to write something that was easy to digest and didn’t feel like a textbook,” says Boynton, who has spent the last 20 years as president and CEO of The Moore Center in Manchester, which provides services to individuals with developmental disabilities. “There are books that suggest ‘31 steps to happiness,’ but who can remember and apply all those steps in their daily lives?”
That’s why Boynton stuck with the title “Begin with Yes,” a succinct summation of what he describes as the “Law of Action.” Boynton says people often conflate thinking about taking steps and actually taking them, and when it comes to putting their plans into motion, they minimize the value of small steps in achieving their goals.
In “Begin with Yes,” Boynton encourages his readers to create a discipline of taking small daily steps that can be accomplished in as little as 15 minutes. By the end of the week, he says these seven small steps add up to create momentum that can help people feel in control of their own lives.
“We tend to spend so much time dreaming about what we’d like to happen, but if we just take a little bit of time each day taking small steps, we can make great progress in the right direction,” says Boynton. “All these small steps set things into motion. Once you start moving in that direction, then things begin to happen.”
Boynton used a conversational writing style for “Begin with Yes” which he says made the book both easy to write and read, adding that most people can finish the book during a short flight. The conversational tone draws from Boynton’s experience as a therapist and allows him to add an “organic and authentic” feeling to his writing.
“I imagine what questions people would ask me about ‘beginning with yes’ and allow the answers to come from within and take on lives of their own,” says Boynton. “It makes writing a book feel natural and flow easily.”
After self-publishing his book with CreateSpace, Boynton took to social media to promote his work and launched a growing base of followers. His “Begin with Yes” Facebook page had 1.94 million likes as of press time, a number that’s been growing by about 12,000 new likes each month and puts him just under such big names as Deepak Chopra and Louise Hay. According to Boynton, between 800,000 and 1 million of his followers engage with his posts every week. He says most pages average less than 10 percent weekly engagement.
“I could do a three minute course on how to develop a Facebook page,” says Boynton. “The key is to be an authentic voice, don’t always be trying to sell people something, be consistent in your posts, interact with your audience and create content your audience wants to share end engage with.”
Boynton has accepted national speaking engagements since publishing “Begin with Yes” but recently pulled back to focus on local events due to the time and effort required to prepare and travel for events out-of-state. He’s since written seven companion guides to “Begin with Yes” and is now preparing his latest book, “Be Amazing,” which he sees as a continuation of his Law of Action philosophy.
“It’s about awakening people’s recognition of their own potential and encouraging them to always do a little better than just ‘ok',” says Boynton. “It’s not about reaching a certain point, but striving to be as amazing as you can be each day and continuing to push yourself a little bit past where you’ve been before.”
Boynton will be presenting his first speaking engagement for “Be Amazing” as the keynote speaker at Business NH Magazine’s annual Breakfast with the Best event on October 19 at the Grappone Conference Center in Concord. He plans on running an interactive event and is looking forward to sharing inspiration with the audience.
“Everyone will be co-creating in the process; they’ll have the opportunity to both ask questions and contribute their own thoughts,” says Boynton. “I plan on walking away from the breakfast with some additional ideas for ‘Be Amazing'.”
Paul Boynton’s Six “Be Amazing” Qualities
- Offer unexpected acts of generosity, kindness and other thoughtful behaviors.
- Don’t necessarily strive for being the best, but do strive to be the very best you can be.
- Have an intention that becomes a narrative—even if it’s only one sentence long.
- Be as accommodating as possible.
- Create a community, serve the one you’re in or bring disparate communities together.
- Be authentic about and focused on things you feel passionate about.
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