That was then. This is now. I am in demand as a speaker both in and out of Toastmasters. Last week I spoke to NASA engineers at J.P.L. about non-verbal communication, and they called it an "entertaining and distinguished presentation" from which they learned a lot. I am teaching rocket scientists!
That first competition was not much fun for me, but it certainly was a worthwhile growing experience. One can't improve without taking chances on finding out what needs improvement.
As the commercials say - "Just Do It!"
Pat Stewart DTM LGET Los Angeles Club
About a year ago I was in a fairly deep depression which was annoying me, mainly because I did not know why I was depressed. I decided that one thing that might help me was to be more active in society. I joined Toastmasters for a number of reasons, including a wish to be more involved, the desire to be more confident in certain situations which were troubling me, and as a recognition of my prior enjoyment of public speaking situations.
I have completed 5 speeches (2 months short of a years membership) and have already noticed an increased ability in my speaking skilled, increased confidence, and a decrease in my shyness towards strangers. I am more able to speak in situations which were troubling me.
I am now enjoying life a lot more than I was, and do believe that membership in toastmasters been a real positive step, and is worth every cent of the fees charged.
Jason Monson Pegasus Toastmasters, Christchurch New Zealand; District 72
Six years ago (2/90), I joined Toastmasters to help me "come out of myself" and learn to deal with my fellow human beings in more positive and constructive ways. Thanks to Toastmasters, my self-esteem has increased, I've learned to be a better leader through service as a Club officer, Area Governor, and Division Governor, and I've made more friends than I've ever imagined I could.
To me, Toastmasters is simply a "lesson in life" that *everyone* should take advantage of.
Steve Williams, DTM