It is said that fear of public speaking is one of the biggest human fears all around the world. In my case, it was on top 3.
At the workplace, I was able to frequently avoid the times when I had to speak in front of an audience. That’s an art! But, of course, there were situations when I couldn’t do this and I was forced to present a speech.
These situations pushed me to face my fear of public speaking and to join the program TOASTMASTERS, one year ago.
For those of you who don’t know, Toastmasters International is a top global organization which has the purpose to develop the ability of public speaking and leadership all around the world.
Through its clubs, Toastmasters International helps people to learn the art of public speaking, active listening, and critical thinking, in order to increase the personal development and leadership potential.
I have chosen the club Toastmasters IDEST https://m.facebook.com/toastmastersidest/ due to its members who create a friendly and supportive environment at every meeting. Firstly I have visited the club, just as a guest, observing the roles and the speakers, but I wanted so much to find out of what I am capable in this domain, that I became a member. I have scheduled my first speech and when that day came, the panic didn’t let me think of something else. Surprisingly, with all my emotions, the speech was appreciated by the audience. I know that because every speaker received from the public a ticket with their feedback. So the appreciative, but also constructive feedback I have received, made me continue with speech after speech. After only one year I have presented 10 speeches, in which I have practiced organizing a speech, gestures, vocal variety, research or persuading the audience. At the end of these 10 speeches, I have reached the level of „Competent Communicator” and I have received a certificate from Toastmasters International. I was so proud when I had it in my hands!
Meanwhile, at some meetings when I didn’t deliver any speech I assumed the leadership roles, like Toastmaster of the meeting, Grammarian, Timer, Evaluator. This leadership part is the other branch offered by the Toastmasters program, near the public speaking.
From the beginning, I liked these leadership roles and my favorite is Toastmaster of the meeting, the person who presents and leads a meeting. I like this role because I can choose the meeting theme and I can bring something new from one meeting to another.
So, very soon, my effort of assuming leadership roles will be rewarded with another certificate from Toastmasters International: „Competent Leader” and I can’t wait!
Although I feel the improvement on my public speaking, and also on my leadership skills, my journey doesn’t stop here. I have a long road until I became „Advanced Communicator” and „Advanced Leader”.
If you are also interested in personal development, public speaking or leadership you can visit the club Toastmasters IDEST, every Monday from 19.30 at the address Lt. Ionescu Balcan Street, no. 24, 2nd district, Bucharest, Romania.
Participation at meetings, as a guest, is free.
This program helped me a lot and even if I still have emotions, now, I don’t run from presentations at my job anymore. I know I will always have emotions, but I don’t have to hide them, just to control them, because this is what defines me!
About the Author:
Andreea Titirisca is a member of Toastmasters Idest who likes working with people, both in this club and at her job. Her quote is “Never let a bad day make you feel like you have a bad life”.
PS: Leave a comment below and tell me about your experience with public speaking.
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