Stepping out of that zone

woman presenting a slide showing a group of four people

Man standing behind a lecturnMember blog by Max Delaney. This week’s meeting was hosted wonderfully by David Clarkson as Toastmaster and was centred around the theme of Comfort Zone. Each speaker this week stepped out of their comfort zone, which David reminded us throughout the meeting is the most effective way to reach our goals.

(Note from the Editor – David was one of our founding members. Can you spot him in the feature image, taken 25 years ago?)

Corinne Bataille began the morning with an informative speech, titled ‘Te Tiriti (Part 1)’; her second speech in the Presentation Mastery pathway. Focussed on the Treaty of Waitangi, her careful use of the whiteboard to engage us was used well in conjunction with snippets of treaty history; Corinne’s speech segued nicely into her next speech, returning to the same topic, which we are all looking forward to hearing.

Dee Bigelow followed with her speech titled ‘Ms Piggy’s Big Pants’, #3-1 – Understanding Conflict Resolution, in her Persuasive Influence pathway. Dee shared a range of experiences from her life that have shaped her ability to deal with conflict. Inviting us into stages of her life chronologically allowed us to progress with her in understanding how she has developed conflict resolution. The examples Dee shared resonated with myself, and I’m sure with others in the room, and her methods in dealing with conflict were informative.

Gerald Hartley’s speech, ‘Finding the Confidence Within’, was #3-14 – Deliver Social Speeches in his Dynamic Leadership pathway. Gerald’s speech took us onto a journey into his Toastmaster experience, why he decided to become a Toastmasters member, and how it has shaped his life since. The results of Gerald stepping out of his comfort zone are clear and he displayed to us confidence Toastmasters can open us up to. Journey speeches like Gerald’s are always thought provoking, leading us to think about our own Toastmasters goals and our journey towards them. Gerald will be presenting this speech at an upcoming Toastmasters new member conference, and based on what we heard last Friday, will be expecting some new members at the club! Good luck Gerald.

Table Topics Master Alannah Vickery followed the meeting theme of Comfort Zone by providing table topics which asked speakers to share experiences on stepping out of their comfort zone. Jacqui, asked to choose between a roller coaster ride or a waterslide, shared her experiences of family trips to theme parks which lead her to her choosing a waterslide ride. Morgane followed by deciding between snorkeling or sky diving, sharing experiences from her (2 year!!) honeymoon that may well have convinced us all why sky diving is the preferred option! Janet, our newest member, stepped up for her first table topics speech and shared with us how she is excited to embark on the Toastmasters journey with us; we are looking forward to seeing you at future meetings! Joji concluded table topics with a speech on his experiences on travelling from overseas to a relatively unknown New Zealand to settle; a true example of stepping out of your comfort zone!

Overall, the meeting was an energetic and fantastic way to end the week.