Paweł is Toastmaster member since June 2013 and now he is chartering a new club at his workplace.
1. What do you find most useful in Toastmaster program? What is the best to overcome stress on stage?
People often say: “I will not do that, it is too hard, I cannot…” – That is the worst thing what they can do. Telling that to yourself you are restricting your mind on failure! You are hurting yourself! I will tell you a story… a journey that started when I crossed my path with Toastmasters.
ONE MEETING THAT CHANGED MY ATTITUDE TO STRESS ON STAGE
I applied for a Toastmaster role that day… I was stressed as it is responsible role and I wanted to benefit from it also with a bit of improvisation on stage… But fortunately for me it was during vacation… so I did not found people for all roles… and eventually my Table Topics Master resigned due to personal reasons… I thought that it would be a great disaster! I had to prepare questions few hours before the meeting and take another role! And that was my blessing. I had to take care of our meeting from start to the end! I did not had time to think about anything more than successful meeting!
“I did not have time to think about anything more than successful meeting”
That was it – at the beginning I felt stressed but with time everything changed! It was 2 hours therapy with instant effect! And I did not overpay for a psychologist’s therapy! Going back to your question then I will answer simple: Best method to overcome stage fright and stress it to take responsibility for something on the stage and be there as long as you can! Because if you will be there always for a minute or two… You will always hurt yourself thinking constantly “it is just a minute and I am safe again”…
“Take responsibility for something on the stage”
2. What specific skills have you learned here and how do you use them in your professional / personal life?
What specific skills have I learned? (said Paweł with a smile) I would not categorize Toastmasters society as a skills developer program! Never ever again! Toastmasters taught me how to enjoy my life. That is not a skill nor knowledge. I found here friendship and atmosphere that is unique on world scale. I found it supportive and fun!
“I found it challenging and developing awareness of many things that you would not think about before”
I found that Toastmasters program is made for everyone. It consists basics not only about public speaking and leadership. I would say that it is not the core of benefits that Toastmasters society can give to everyone.
“Society is the most valuable thing in Toastmasters program these days”
In Era of electronic communication, cell phones and Skype – where people are sitting in their homes and even when they meet someone in the bus or tram…They did not even try to communicate! Toastmasters gathers people that are positive, friendly and kind, fills a gap in our hearts with friendship and fun!