I joined Toastmasters in 2013 to improve my confidence in public speaking. It’s on the big dreams list that I want to share and inspire on big stages!
I loved the knowledge bombs I learned through the Toastmasters program but, more than that, the practice.
Becoming an expert in any skill takes practice and Toastmasters provides the platform, support, and structure to allow anyone to improve their abilities to speak in public!
Here’s my Ice Breaker speech:
Toastmasters Icebreaker Speech
“Hello fellow Toastmasters. I am thrilled to be here this afternoon sharing my very first speech! Thank you for this opportunity.
My objective today is to share with you a little about me. I thought about sharing with you some details of the 32 years I have spent on this Earth – that I love to cook and have a voracious appetite for reading in my spare time. Or how I am somewhat addicted to my job and to Facebook and maybe even sprinkle in a few funny stories about growing up near a holler in the Bluegrass state ofKentucky.
That could all be very fun – But, after much debate I decided I would rather share with you who I want to be.
Who I Want to Be
What’s my legacy when I am gone? What can I do that will be important enough for people to remember? Who do my children get to immortalize when I have passed on? And who do I want to see I look in the mirror and fast forward 30 years. I hope to see three key things – generosity, dreams, and mercy let me share with you how I hope to develop in to that women.
I hope to see a very generous person. I want to be remembered for giving – for hospitality and for service. One of my favorite hobbies is entertaining – hosting friends and sometimes even strangers in my home for a meal I have prepared brings me so much joy. In part, this comes from my upbringing – my mother is an excellent home cook and it was a rare week-end that we dined with just our family. So, hospitality is my in my bones.
My dream is that as I continue to grow I can extend that generosity beyond just a dinner and conversation – and begin to impact lives. Specifically, I hope to impact children by opening my home to serve as a foster mother one day. I also dream of having the ability to give generously to social causes that are important to me. That’s what generosity means to me.
I hope to still see a BIG dreamer. I am not the type of person that sits still for long. I find joy in striving and achieving. Two years ago, I wanted to begin a roadmap to achieve an item on my bucket list – to become a college professor. I expected to achieve this goal would take several years of hard work. I reached out to an acquaintance who was a professor at the University of Nebraska at Omaha in hopes of gaining some advice on how to achieve that dream. Our two hour long conversation ended with an offer for me to work as an adjunct professor the following semester at UNO. I chalk this up to equal parts luck and the audacity to dream big.
I am proud that my five children have a mother who has developed a career by choice– that I have reached for big dreams and even accomplished a few of the crazy ones. I hope this inspires them to have confidence to create whatever life they want. I hope I can look back and have regret for not stretching myself. I hope I keep pushing even when the odds look stacked against me. This is my first actual speech but I have a dream that I can share my knowledge of marketing, social media, and sales strategy to large audiences one day and help inspire others to aim high. That’s what next.
Finally, I hope to see a very merciful woman. Four years ago, my baby brother came out as a gay man in our ultra right-wing conservative community. The journey of supporting him, encouraging him, and watching him mourn the loss of so many friends who could no longer accept him for who he is taught me many life lessons. What I learned so clearly the value of extending mercy in this world. I hope friends, family and strangers can count on me to be one that will accept them no matter what life is throwing at them and see only the unconditional love I hope to portray. I want to be this woman.
Is the person standing in front of you this generous dreamer who always extends mercy? Hardly. I continue to fumble around and find my way like we all do.
The journey to developing who I want to be is exciting and I am proud that Toastmasters will be a piece of that ride for me.