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Archive for Oct 2018

Presentation skills tip – Become your own audience!

“How horrible does this man sound? Look at how he moves on stage!” Those were the first few remarks I exclaimed after I recorded myself for the first time ever. My voice was horrible, the gut-churching gestures – who calls themselves an Advanced Communicator Gold speaker and does that on stage?  That was a light-bulb…

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Leadership Opportunities – Unplanned Leadership journey

  My first-ever visit to a Toastmasters meeting was on the 16th of March 2017 and I attended the Midrand Groundbreakers Club. I was totally unaware that I was about to experience a groundbreaking encounter. By the 1st of April 2017, I was the founding President of Midrand Groundbreakers, a role I suspect I was…

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Did you know about Interpersonal Communication?

A wise man (Benjamin Franklin) once said: Tell me and I forget. Teach me and I remember. Involve me and I learn. I love learning. Wait!!! Let me be specific I love learning by doing, and Toastmasters has offered me just what I needed to build my character. About a month ago I delivered a…

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Editor’s note – Celebrate

Celebrating our small victories is something we overlook time and time again. My birthday has always been important to me because my parents made sure none of my siblings were mean to me on that day. They had to celebrate something good about me even if it meant celebrating helping them find a lost hat…

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District Director – Legacy Month

October is legacy month in Toastmasters. An idea that Dr. Smedley developed as early as 1904 after he had been appointed Director of Education for the Young Men’s Christian Association (YMCA) in Bloomington, Illinois in the United States of America. He saw a need for the men in the community to learn how to speak,…

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Bleeps and Blunders – Off-key!

I am a trained opera singer (failed). Once upon a time I was singing in “The Marriage of Figaro” and completely failed to hear the note I was supposed to sing. Needless to say, I lost my opportunity. My lack of faith in myself finally resulted in my giving up singing. It was deeply wounding.…

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My Mentor – Mr Fantastic

This is Mr. Fantastic… Garth Thomson (CC, ALB) How I got hooked to Toastmasters! Tell me about your favourite soccer team? I think that was the question I asked Mr. Fantastic as he was giving his educational to a group of new consultants with an internationally recognized Management Consultant company. I think he responded by…

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Member Moments – Mining the Toastmasters Gold

Toastmasters are gold. Most Toastmasters know this. However, only a few are able to derive a great proportion of value from this precious program. At its best, it has the ability to consume you and use you to its benefit (nothing wrong here). At your best, you can consume it and use it to your…

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District Director – What is your approach?

What is your approach to Toastmasters? What message(s) is this approach conveying to your fellows toastmasters? I am always in awe each time I visit the different clubs in our district to see that they are frighteningly passionate Toastmasters. Some who just want to be involved at club level, some at area level, some at…

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Editors Note Everything little bit counts

I was the Toastmaster of the day at our engineers club meeting  on Tuesday. One of the guests Prescious introduced herself. She was on her way home when she noticed our sign post outside the gate where our club hosts our meeting.She recalled a colleague had spoken about Toastmasters and its benefits but had no…

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Member Moments – Will “In for a penny In for a pound”

In 2013, I started working for a NPO in the disability sector. I was tasked, originally, with doing their social media but my job description grew quite rapidly as they discovered my various skills. I am a C4 quadriplegic. This means that I have very little use of my body below my chest, but it…

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Bleeps and Blunders – Dancing The Haka

Humorous speech contest time and no idea for a topic until I saw an article about rugby. Not that I had any clue about rugby. The difference between the rugby league and the rugby union was in my opinion that the guys from the rugby league were wearing the shorter shorts. After this explanation, most…

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Presentations Tips – Mastering Table Topics

One tool always fascinated me in my father’s toolbox. It was called a vice grip. I never got to know why it was named so but I always knew that it could grip just about anything that required gripping. The beauty of this wonder tool was that you could adjust it to suit your purpose.…

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My Mentor – Mentors Are Everywhere

  WhatsApp is just a short message application to many people, and whether they have it or not, it really does not make a difference. But to me, it’s a whole lot more than that. It was on the 7th January 2017; a time famous for new-year’s resolutions that I received an unexpected WhatsApp message…

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Leadership Opportunities – A leader within

A  leader walks into the kitchen and finds an optimist and pessimist arguing about whether  the glass is half full or half empty. He asks them both to fill up their glasses and be productive. For as long as man has been around, man has been on a quest to be lead by great leaders.…

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Did you know about the District 74 Head Hunter Trophy

The World Champion is not technically the best in the world. (S)He would be the best in the competition. You have to enter the competition.For the past 3 years, I have entered the competition and have won effortlessly. It is not the best feeling, a competition should stretch you! This year, I want you to…

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A Worthy Journey-Treasurers

They say a journey of a thousand miles begins with one step. But that’s a lie, any worthy journey that you are going to embark on technically begins with commitment in the mind. You can’t just take that first step without first assessing your needs and where you want to go, otherwise you will easily…

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The Half-Way Mark-Presidents

Can you believe the first half of your term as President is almost over? If there is something I have learnt in Toastmasters leadership, it is that the time goes very quickly. Today, I would like to invite you to join me in a series of reflections. Do you remember what success looked like for…

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How Do You Measure Up? Secretaries

Congratulations on completing Q1, your first quarter as the Club Executive Committee. How have you found the role so far? Can you remember why you took up the role of being Club Secretary? What value have you added thus far? Does your performance measure up to your expectations and that of the club? All the…

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Toast-spiration-Newbie to President

I joined Toastmasters in 2016 and I never looked back. By the end of the TM year I had completed my CC10. I was still a new member and my club was nominating new exco. Like most of the new members, I wasn’t really sure what that meant. I received a call from our then…

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