I Am Frustrated With My Book!

by | 18 comments

So far this year I have traveled to many states to keynote conferences. It seems to me more and more people are requesting my book on CD. Basically, people are busier than ever and they don’t have enough time to read. To me, nothing beats having a physical book in my hands. I love turning pages. Besides, when I read, I get a chance to improve my English.

Anyway, I just hired a company to help me put my book Kick Your Excuses Goodbye on audio. We signed the contract. Now it’s up to me to choose which days I want to show up to start reading. It’s a very interesting experience for me. While in the studio, the sound engineer sits in front of a computer and monitors me on his headset.

When I stumble on a word, he indexes the location for editing. But there’s one major problem. I am definitely stumbling unto too many words. And I can’t seem to find my natural voice. You know what I mean? It’s like you can be as natural as you want when conversing everyday with friends or family members.

However, as soon as you know the record button is pressed, your voice and everything else that makes you unique changes. Does that make sense to you? Oh yes, you remember when you were sitting down at the family gathering being relaxed and natural. Then uncle Charlie says, “Cheese!.” And suddenly you freeze.

Yep, you start changing that beautiful and natural smile on your face. You check your clothes and hair to make sure everything is in the right place. If you are a lady, you probably said, “Hold on uncle Charlie. Let me put some lipstick on.” That’s the same issue I am having. Now don’t get me wrong. I am a keynote speaker. I can project and enunciate. But I am talking about my natural conversational sounding voice.

I am guessing that my challenge is because it’s been over 5 years since I wrote the book. I am not as close to it as I was when it was first written. Come to think of it, that’s an excuse. Isn’t my book about kick your excuses? Well, I guess that I need to kick that one quick.

Here’s the lesson I am reminded of through this process:

I needed to take more time to practice reading and preparing myself before I show up for recording. You see, too many of us try to wing it. Admittedly, I am not the winging type person. And it should be obvious to you. I am always prepared and ready.

So, if you are frustrated right now with a project, maybe you need to take the necessary time to study, prepare and get ready for it. Don’t be too perfect. Get going then perfect it later. But don’t be stupid either. So let me go practice some more. I will let you know how the whole recording turns out. I know it’s supposed to turn out extremely well. But I will let you know anyway.

I would love to hear your comment.

Scroll down and share your advice, feedback or even your frustration with me. By the way, now there’s a way I can reply to comment right away.


  1. Robin

    Hi Rene,

    I met you today (online), and I just listened to the video’s you have on your web site. I don’t usually like audio books, but as I was listening to you speak, the thought ran through my mind that I’d like to be able to listen to you on CD. Naturally, after I’d heard your video’s, I clicked onto Rene’s Products hoping to find what I was looking for, and low and behold there you were talking about producing an audio book for “Kick Your Excuses Goodbye”.

    I was kind of surprised that you’re struggling with this process, because you sound so good on video. Then again, it’s not so surprising, because you probably sound different in a recording studio. Mostly, it’s probably your perception of how you sound that’s making you a little tense (because it’s a new experience), and that tenseness is coming across on the recording, BUT, that will change. The more you do it, the more natural it will feel. One exercise you might want to try (if you’re not doing it already), is to record yourself on a mini recorder. I’ve found that some of my most profound thoughts come while I’m driving.

    Sometimes, I get so excited I have to pull over to finish the topic I’m discussing. When I initially played my recording back, I was surprised to find that I sound quite nice. Like you, I have a voice that projects, and it has a certain grittyness to it. No, I’m so not comparing myself to you. I’ve never even spoken in pubic before, but I will this Thursday, July 26, 2007! It’s nothing big, but it is a beginning.

    This may sound funny, but I don’t care about riches and fame. I don’t want to pass this life without having touched someone in a positive way. Yes, I’ve touched many people, one by one, over the years, but I always see myself on stage speaking to a large audience. Listening to you has given me a clearer picture of what I need to do in order to start my business. There’s lots that will need to be done, but I’m more confident that I’ll get there.

    Thanks so much, and keep recording that CD!!!!


    Robin Ann Bunn

    • Rene Godefroy

      Hi Robin,

      Great advice! You are so on target. That’s exactly what I have been doing. I record myself every morning on my little sophisticated Olympus digital recorder. Then I go out for a run and listen to myself. That actually helps my morning jugging fun and fast.

      Also, what I discovered works best for me is when I actually monitor myself while recording. You know what’s so funny? My producer is exactly the opposite. He said he messes up when he monitors his voice. Go figure!

      Another tip is I stand up while recording instead of sitting down. That makes a huge different. I discovered that more air goes to my diaphragm which gives me a much better resonance.

      Anyway, today I just finished chapter 8 and tomorrow I get to record chapter 9 and 10. That’s perfect timing since I am heading to a humanitarian trip to my village in Haiti right after.

      Thank you so much for sharing your insights with me.

      You are awesome my friend!

  2. Nicky

    Very helpful blog entry Rene. I have trouble knowing that the “good” speakers and writers practice – they seem so natural! I think I’m clearer now about the need for practice, I now have to actually practice.

    Thanks for your work in the world.


    • Rene Godefroy

      Yes Nicky! Even the “good” speakers practice. You would not believe what the president of this country has to go through to get ready for the State of the Union Address. It’s like torture.

      I mean, we are talking about a man who has been giving speeches almost all his life! I am told that it should take five hours of preparation for every five minutes of speech. Personally, I think that’s crazy!

      Since I always speak from my heart, I don’t need to prepare that much. But there’s something about reading the book in a studio that felt awkward. I guess I just love
      audiences! Maybe I would do better much better if I was reading the book in front of
      an audience.

      Having said that, the reading is really going great! I will share more about it with you later.

  3. Tony Bunsie

    Dear Rene,

    I read about your wonderful work you are undertaking for your people in Haiti, I wish you all the best, and hope that someday we both shall meet.

    Sincerely yours

    Tony Bunsie
    On the behalf of AMDAY-B

    • Rene Godefroy

      Thanks Tony. Definitely something we will meet. The world is shrinking bit by bit. Take care my friend.

  4. Thom Wert

    This might sound strange or silly, but what about hanging a poster of an audience in front of you while you read?

    • Rene Godefroy

      Hey Thom, this is not silly at all. It’s a great idea! Thanks for sharing it with me.

  5. John

    I Just want to say ‘thank you”
    you’re have impacted my life positively. you ‘re a source of encouragement
    to me. each time i read your book or mail i get fired up.

    Thanks very much.
    You are doing a great job. May God bless you.
    I aspire to do want you are doing touching and impacting life.
    I want your mail to come often , I always look forward to your mails
    thanks a million thanks.

    I hope to meet you face to face one day.

    John from Nigeria

    • Rene Godefroy

      You are welcome my friend. Keep pressing on! You have what it takes. You only have to believe and keep persevering in spite of all your challenges.

  6. John Christian

    Dear Rene,

    I actually appreciate your the insight you have just given me that “good” speakers and writers practice. As a motivational speaker and HIV/AIDS educator I used to think that since I always speak from my heart, I don’t need to prepare that much, but now I know that I need to practice and I have to actually practice.

    I wish you all the best and I pray that one day you will visit Nigeria and we shall surely meet.

    • Rene Godefroy

      Yep, most people try to wing it. I really believe in preparation–learning all we can to position ourselves for success. Nigeria is a wonderful country. One day indeed I shall visit.

      Take care

  7. michelle

    Hi Rene,

    I cant believe you of all people you are the last to be frustrated because of your book!!

    Your voice is great because God gave you that voice and you should be grateful because you can imagine those people who cant be able to talk or are numb.

    You are doing great and by practicing you will do even better, as you always inspire others never give up.

    All the best and Thank you for touching my life and inspiring it in a way you will never know.

    • Rene Godefroy

      Michelle, I guess that makes human. You are right, one would never think that as a keynote speaker, I would be frustrated reading my book.

      Many people see me as if I have all the answers or I don’t struggle. That’s so far from the truth. Successful people are not necessarily those without problems. They are instead those who know how to manage their problems and overcome their obstacles.

  8. Thatayaone

    Hi Rene,

    I kind of loved your comments on “I am frustrated by my own book”. I mean, you are natural and you openly admit some of your challenges and short falls. I believe this is what makes you a great excuse buster! I tell you, i’ve learnt a lot about you from this report and look forward to partnering with such a great man like yourself. Thanks a lot for helping the world.

    • Rene Godefroy

      Good morning Thatayaone,

      Thanks for your comment. This one attribute is what helps me connect with my audiences so deeply. People intuitively know when we are real or operating behind a mask.

      The number one feedback I often get from my audiences after a speech is how authentic I am on stage. If you ever have to do any speaking in public, this is great advice. Be real. Don’t be too concerned about your flaws. The audience members have them, too.

      Anyway, we all have a truckload of excuses. But some of us learn how to kick them one by one and move on.

      Take care my friend.

  9. Adelynn

    Hi Rene,

    I feel very happy that I can always look forward to your advice / inspirational thoughts to help me through my difficult moments. Every little article you share with us has something we can definitely learn from.

    Working in a new project lately that I constantly feel I have not done enough. I try hard to read more, to understand more and hopefully can deliver the project successfully. Somehow there are times that I indeed feel I have not allowed myself to destress and relax.

    But I do believe “practice makes perfect”. And I’m holding on a positive attitude and a belief that I can do well if I put extra effort in it.

    I am grateful that I found out about a great speaker like you who can inspire me this much and thank you for making a difference.



  10. Thom

    Just was wondering, Is there a reason you changed the name of your book from No Condition is Perment to Kick your excuses goodbye?

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