Thank you, Toastmasters!

Posted on September 6, 2012

A few weeks ago I decided that I was going to start writing the speech of my life, even if I don’t have anybody to present it to yet. This has been my mission ever since and it has now led me to joining Toastmasters.

As I’m writing my first Icebreaker Speech, I realize how much I dislike talking about myself. Sure, I can do it in conversations very easily, but to stand in front of a room of strangers and talk for 5 straight minutes by myself is a whole other story. The difficulty I’m getting hung up on is that I want it to be AMAZING and blow everyone out of the water! When I’m done with my speech, I want my fellow Toastmasters to be thinking, ‘Wow, that was the best Icebreaker Speech I’ve ever heard!’ I realize that this is insane pressure to put on yourself, but this is how I think about everything in life. Is this normal? Is this healthy? Is it unhealthy?

I’ve seen one Icebreaker speech at a Toastmasters meeting, and to be completely honest, I had no idea what the person’s point was. This bothered me. My difficulty in writing my Icebreaker speech has been determining what my thesis is. Every speech class you ever take, every book you ever read about writing speeches says you must have a thesis that you then form your main points and the entire structure of your speech from- but how do you write a thesis about your life???

After reading a few other Icebreaker speeches online here are some possible options for my thesis:

- Quote I live by: then giving examples through my life of when that quote inspired me.

- Declaration of why I joined Toastmasters: share events in my life leading up to joining.

- What’s the most important thing in my life: give examples of why this is so important to me and how this has been demonstrated in my life.

This blog article helped me a lot in determining possible directions my speech can go in 6 Minutes: Speaking and Presentation Skills. This blog article also gives great ideas for speech layout options and has great ideas and lots of sample speeches to read and watch too!

I will post my speech after it’s finalized too- so come back soon!

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