I don’t have a problem raising my voice and speaking out on issues that I am passionate about. I can write letters without hesitation and raise my voice in the crowd protesting injustices against humanity and happenings that will adversely effect our earth in our time and in our children’s. If I’m passionate enough I can even stand and make my solo voice be heard in a crowded room. But I have to be passionate.
Normally, I shrink in a classroom, unable to even ask the question that is burning on my lips. Unable to share the information that would be of benefit to the rest of the students. I am unable to speak out. It is no different for me in a social situation where I am amongst strangers. I will hang on the edge. My internal voice will be berating me, pushing me forward but I am resistant. I don’t listen and nor do I speak out. I leave these gatherings feeling socially isolated and inadequate.
When I joined Toastmasters the purpose was to get me to a position where I was comfortable pitching my manuscript Nightmare in Paradise to a publisher or at a writers festival. Public speaking is an activity that has many petrified. It has been shown that more people would prefer to be in the coffin than giving a eulogy. Toastmasters was going to help me overcome this fear.
What I didn’t realise on joining Toastmasters was that the biggest benefit I would gain would be unfreezing in social situations and when my voice was solo in a venue. Practice at impromptu speaking with the segment in Toastmasters called table topics was going to make me more comfortable to speak out. I still have a long way to go. I haven’t mastered it yet but I am on the way. And what a thrill it was to receive the President’s Award for a table topics I was asked to present (impromptu) at the last meeting.
In response to the Weekly Discover challenge