Wednesday, November 9, 2011

5 Reasons Why You Should Join A Speech Contest

Have you ever tried joining a public speaking contest? If you have, then you can understand my sentiments when I say that it’s one of the best experiences anyone can have. Whenever I join a speech contest, I feel so alive. It’s like my emotions are heightened. I feel a combination of many things at the same time. Fear, excitement, trepidation and a sense of anticipation. It doesn’t matter how long you have been a toastmaster or how old or young you are. There is no discrimination here in Toastmasters. Whether you are 18 or 78, as long as you are eligible, you are free to join your category of choice. And unlike beauty pageants there is no height requirement.

How many times have you tried joining a speech contest? Once? Twice? Or perhaps you have yet to try it. The 2012 District Conference is drawing near. Ok, so it’s still 6 months away. But remember that there are many levels - the club, area and division level. If you want to compete at discon, decide now so you can prepare your plane fare, hotel fare and oh, your speech material too in advance.

Here are 5 reasons why you should join a speech contest.

It makes you feel alive. Whenever I join a speech contest I feel many conflicting emotions all at the same time. I feel excited and scared. I feel like I have both diarrhea and constipation. I can feel my heartbeat thundering in my ears and my hands becoming cold and clammy. Really. It’s the best feeling the world. But please. Don’t take my word for it. Try it yourself.

 You might win. I’m not kidding. Even if you've been a toastmaster for only a few months and think that you don’t know anything at all about public speaking, there's a good chance that you might win. Especially if there are only 3 contestants and you are guaranteed a spot no matter how badly you do. Even if you don’t get to be the champion, hey, they also give trophies to the runners up. You can then proudly display that at home people will think you are such a good speaker. You can even include that in your resume to impress potential employers.

Learning experience. Joining a speech contest is a great learning experience. Whether you win or not you get to improve. You learn. You become better. It’s not only the contest itself that allows you to become a better speaker it’s the preparation involved. The more time you invest in preparing for the contest, the better your chances of winning. Aside from it being a learning experience, it’s also a humbling experience. You learn how to accept defeat graciously.

You might meet your next love match. This is another excellent reason for joining a speech contest. Who knows? Your next boyfriend/girlfriend might be a fellow contestant. I have a clubmate who met his girlfriend through a speech contest. They were both contestants for the international prepared speech. He wasn’t able to get the trophy but at least he got the girl.

Registration refund. Are you a bit tight on budget? Here is the good news. If you represent your division in the District conference in any of the categories, you get a 50% or full refund on your registration fee. I know someone who joins contestants for this very reason. You know who you are. But seriously I get a kick about getting freebies too! 

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Recommended Blogs

Learning is a continuous process. One way to do so is by sharing ideas and networking with other people.

Do you have something you want to share to the world? Contact me here and let's exchange links!

Here is a list of blogs I find worth reading:

1. Bo Sanchez
2. Jomar Hilario
3. Think Rich Pinoy
4. Seminar Philippines