Stu Speaks
Stu Speaks

A Message of Leadership and Laughter.

Stu Speaks - inspiration that moves you to fly.

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Living the dream

Fri, 2010-07-16 05:04

I know I haven’t written a BLOG in a LONG time. I have been busy. I have been on vacation. Been spending time at the beach, going for runs, lazing around in Muskoka chairs, went for a couple of nature hikes, did a little rock climbing, spent a lot of time reflecting and reading, enjoyed a few spins on the speed boat, had some gourmet food prepared by my own amazing chef and I am currently bustin’ a move at the Disco!

It has been an amazing few weeks. The good news is that I am on vacation for the next 6 weeks!! I know what you are wondering, how? How do I do this, how do I afford it? Truth is, it’s all free. In fact I get paid to do it. Honestly. No, I don’t work on a cruise line or some expensive five star resort.

I own a summer camp. I have for 18 years. I am blessed by whomever you want to name. I am blessed by the ability to truly live out my dreams! Years ago a YMCA camp counsellor I said to who would ever listen that I want to own my own camp one day… and PRESTO, I do. Now, I would like you to believe that it was just that easy, but it wasn’t. It took a lot of time, hard work and patience.

The hardest parts of this whole journey has been one, making the actual decision to start the camp and two, believing in my dream SO much that when everyone else around me told me that we should not expand, not move and not even keep doing the camp, I said no. The only two true passions I have in my life are my kids and growing YLCC (YouthLeadership Camps Canada, that’s my camp).

There were a plethora of exits provided to me on silver plater. There were lots of “reasons” I could of folded up the tents and no one would have thought any less of me. Except one person… me. I would forever know that I quit, that I gave up.

My job, my career is my vacation. There are tough times and as we grow tougher choices I am faced with. That’s ok, even the most perfect vacation can have rainy days. You just have to make a new plan, adjust your sails and regroup. I guess my challenge to anyone is to find that ONE thing that you believe in SO much that you will do anything to make it a reality. Maybe it’s a new business, a family, making the team, graduating with honours, writing that book or owning your own camp one day.

The only thing you have to remember is that you need to work hard, don’t give up, believe in you and ignore the critics.

I’m off to a much deserved rest. Goodnight and dream deeply!

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  • Stu Speaks

    Students were very engaged, enthusiastic and excited. Stu is hilarious…seriously. “Humour is never a bad thing” said one student.

    ~Annalisa Varano - Vice Principal - St. Thomas Aquinas Catholic Secondary School
  • Stu Speaks

    They say a great presenter “leaves them wanting more”. Well, we loved your presentation and the entire team asked me when you will be back! You are truly STUpendous!

    ~Nancy Klensch - Founder of Summit Kids
  • Stu Speaks

    Stu is an energetic, entertaining and dynamic presenter. He captures is audiences’ attention and keeps the room engaged for the entire presentation! His stories in his presentation captures everyone at different points, even the teachers!

    ~Sara Meaney - Cobourg Collegiate Institute
  • Stu Speaks

    Stu was great! Staff and students felt it really broke the anxiety in the building and we even got cupcakes today from one of the students.

    ~Carrie Rowlandson - William Aberhart High School, Calgary Alberta
  • Stu Speaks

    Stu was fantastic. There is nothing better than seeing 600 adolescents laughing their heads off. He delivers a terrific message and has the entire audience engaged, thinking, listening and most importantly laughing within seconds, and he keeps it going for over an hour. Thanks again on behalf of the Shores!!

    ~Doug Woods - Vice Principal, Nantyr Shores Secondary School
  • Stu Speaks

    Stu’s speech did exactly what I hoped it would do when I tried to bring him in: it brought the school together for a good laugh while empowering the student body to be the change they wish to see in their classroom. I feel he hit this goal perfectly.

    ~Steven Fotheringham - Oakville Trafalgar High School
  • Stu Speaks

    I really liked how the speech really just seemed like Stu was telling us funny stories, but he always related it back to the overall message. It didn’t sound like a speech at all, it was as if he was just talking to the crowd. I would say that he is excellent in connecting with the audience and keeping them entertained. There was not a two minute period in Stu’s speech were nobody was laughing. He kept us amused throughout the entire presentation. I thought he was perfect.

    ~James Palloto
  • Stu Speaks

    I would highly recommend Stu, his engaging personality was a real hook for the students and his messages were ones that many of them could identify with. The humour was great and the students shared that they enjoyed the presentation.

    ~Teresa Fowler - W.H. Croxford High School, Airdrie, Alberta
  • Stu Speaks

    Stu is personable. Students are willing to listen to him. They enjoy listening to him. He has a message, but he is also entertaining. He is fun to listen to and students don’t feel talked down to or preached at.

    ~Tanya Lacey - McKinnon Park Secondary School, Caledonia, ON
  • Stu Speaks

    I was at the OCA conference on May 6th, and I just wanted to thank you on being such a wicked keynote… you definitely put me back in the camp mindset and reminded me of what’s truly important about the up-coming summer. Once again, a job very well done.

    ~Emily Summers
  • Stu Speaks

    The students really enjoyed Stu’s humour and low-key but critical message about getting involved and getting the most out of their High School experience. I would recommend Stu as a speaker who relates well to students, is funny, and gets the message out without preaching.

    Thank you,

    ~Lynn Toye