I had heard of Toastmasters when I was younger but it wasn’t until years later that I read about it in a book by one of my favorite authors Jeffrey Gitomer that I was truly intrigued.
It was over 6 years ago that I joined a local club. After attending my first meeting, I knew it was for me. The public speaking and leadership development in a supportive atmosphere was right up my alley.
Like many things that require a lot of focus and discipline, most people dabble here and there. I knew that if I truly wanted to make great strides in these areas I’d have to be in it for the long haul. So I set out to accomplish the ultimate goal of earning the DTM (Distinguished Toastmaster) designation.
To become a DTM is no easy task. It includes planning, practicing, and delivering over 40 talks as well as many other presentations and countless other leadership tasks.
I made a lot of headway early on and my involvement in Toastmasters helped my career tremendously.
I got side tracked a bit with scheduling issues and a young family but I re-committed this year to reach DTM by the end of the year.
I knew I still had a lot of work ahead of me including 6 speeches.
As I began planning things out I became a little stressed over how much had to get done. Of course this was an arbitrary goal but I put in so much work towards it already. Besides Toastmasters is in the process of changing the course so the deadline is actually real.
As I was going through all the things I’d already done, I realized I misjudged things. I was actually done with all of the main speeches and I was much closer than I had realized.
The ultimate goal was very much in reach and I became certain it would happen. My stress disappeared at once.
It got me thinking that this is how it is for most of us.
Regardless of how far you feel you are from your goal, you’re closer than you think!Most people give up just when they’re about to achieve success. They quit on the one yard line. They give up at the last minute of the game one foot from a winning touchdown. – Ross Perot
Billy Hofacker – Owner & Transformation Coach at Total Body Boot Camp – BS, CSCS