Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Who Has Time for Personal Development?

Ever since I sat down and started thinking about my goals, I've been immersed in Toastmasters. A couple of years ago, I mentioned at a Toastmaster training that our club had not grown any DTMs in the 19 years of its existence. The trainer wisely suggested I be the first. So, last year I announced to my club that I was going to go for it. It seems to have spurred a couple of members to consider doing the same thing. I know I've given enough speeches to have my ACS by now, but I can't find the manuals. I'll have to do a thorough search of my garage. I have boxes and shelves of books out there that I should go through. I know the manuals are really close by. I just have to find them.

I gave my last speech June 15 to a group of sales people who wanted to see what Toastmasters was all about. I didn't remind them that we had a meeting today, so no one showed up. I also invited people from the Heart 2 Heart Toastmasters club to visit Slick Talkers.

Slick Talkers is my home club. I also belong to Beyond Basics, an advanced club for Toastmasters who have completed their Competent Communicator manual. I saw their flyer at a couple of speech contests this past year, and it said they had several DTMs, several Past District Officers, several Area Governors, and I figured it was a club I should join to help me on my journey.

Now that I am going to be an Area Governor for 2011-2012, I'll be even busier. I got a taste of what it will be like when I visited Heart 2 Heart on Tuesday during the lunch hour. I was perfectly comfortable getting to know the members, asking questions, and encouraging them. Then instead of Table Topics, the Toastmaster of the Day asked if I'd like to say a few words. I got up and stuttered and stammered, and rambled on and on, and I don't think I made a point or sense. I was so embarrassed. I mentioned it to our past Area Governor, and he said he did the same thing. Now I know what to expect. Never go without a speech prepared about the DCP, the speech contests, the conference. There's always something to talk about.

I've achieved ACB, which is Advanced Communicator Bronze. This means I've given at least 20 speeches.

I've coordinated 2 speech crafts, which will help me toward the DTM. I have 2 more speeches and 2 more modules from the Leadership/Communicator/Club (LCC) Programs to achieve ACS, Advanced Communicator Silver.

I have achieved ALB, which is Advanced Leader Bronze. This means I've completed the Competent Leader manual and given 2 modules from the LCC Programs. To earn the DTM, I have to complete a High-Performance Leadership project. I have a couple of ideas that I'd like to talk to my management about tomorrow. I'm pretty excited about them. I hope they let me do one of them. Since it will be a Toastmasters project, I'd be willing to do it on my own time.

It's amazing how much I've learned being in Toastmasters. I've made so many friends both in my club and in the Toastmasters community.

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