Monday, September 14, 2009

Why we go into it?

St Martin's Lane early morning-26
We do go into things with a goal, often we do gain something very different, or more then we did expect from it.

From my Toasmaster Club, where I have to prepare my speeches, for hours, days, weeks, I also gain a better understanding of myself and my past. More then writing or taking photos. Or, at least, differently.

Connecting with the audience, directly, does to me something special, it is like a love affair with my public, with each or some of them. It give me more incentive to look very deep into myself, to understand our common fears and joys. To think more of how to enchant them.

Yesterday, I went to Dorking, 50 miles away with my car, and first time with my new SatNav, satelite navigator telling me the way to go. On the way I thought "is is worth to go so far for a workshop?"

Even there, I was not sure.

I did not get what I wanted from it. I did get a lot more! A lot more important. Listening to the three very different speeches of the three presidents of Toastmaster clubs, given to us after the speech explaining how to judge a contest, explained it to me better than anything could do. Completed the workshop, rounded it.

Of course, the cafeterias and % of each are important, the body language and voice of the first speaker was excellent, and he had worked a lot on them. His presentation was great, even if long time I did not understand where he want to take us. But he did not personalize it at all, and spoke "down" to us, preeching, rather then "we are in the same situation".

So, his excellent ideas and speech left me cold.

He did learn the different lessons from the manual, but there is something beyond, that was not in it. Was it personal implication? Did he take note of everything happening around him, like I do, I did not really knew at the end.

The second speaker, a woman, about the same age as me, was very low key speaker, relative to the first. Voice did not carry a lot and movements very subdued. Yet, she begun with a personal experience, and lead to us through her speech to what she wanted to convey. Finally, I did note her higher. Her emotion carried in her voice, her smile conquered.

The third speaker told us an enhanced personal story about a red shirt he suddenly felt he should have. It was not to "teach us" or "persuade us", mostly to "entertain" with a lot of humour but also personal feelings and emotions we all have. We all are indecisive some time, we all want to please, be center of attention, most of us look how much we spend.

But what I realized only this morning, his tale, based on some facts, changed to make it more interesting, got to me (and all the others and the judges) most of the three. For me so much, that I was transported in his story world, seeing the images, the film he painted in my own mind eyes, forgetting about Toastmasters, body movement, voice projection or pitch, all the technique was there probably, surely, but so well that it did not stand out.

That is what makes a really good speech, a really good story.

To see the three, to compare them, to look at the wonderful presentation and great topics after the speeches, yes, I did not go for nothing to Dorkings, did not do all that long road - the first long trip with this car and in a year, for nothing.

I have yet to discover other reasons for doing it. I also got confidence "I can do it" - I mean drive, even after 75 and this car, and in UK. And I can strive to speak so well that once, my audience will forget all other then the world of my tale.

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