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Just wanted to share with you a remarkable experience happened last night. I delivered my first Toastmasters speech since I’m back in Germany. The setting was quite special, our club met outdoors in the Rothschild-Park in Frankfurt, in a (small) Coliseum-like venue.
My speech project was from the “Entertaining Speeches” manual and the purpose was to tell a story which wasn’t my own (drawing from someone else’s experience).
So I picked the story which inspired me most when I heard it live from Tony Robbins a year ago: The real story of Sylvester Stallone. (here’s a youtube link to a similar occasion he told that story)
I modified the speech to fit my purpose, practiced it the usual 5-7 times and delivered it tonight in front of 25 Toastmasters and guests. During the speech I felt fantastic and I knew this would become one of my best deliveries to date.
Here’s the remarkable thing: I never got such an overwhelming reaction for any of my speeches! During the speech, at times people laughed out loud and then, some of them even fought with their tears. And I never got such an outstanding positive evaluation from a guest we had (Her name is Judy, she’s from Pennsylvania, Toastmaster since 15+ years and a DTM). So I really felt incredible during these minutes.
And in the end, she gave our club one more very powerful advice:
She asked whether we also know these feelings, that sometimes we’d just like to stay at home, watching TV, doing nothing or going to bed. Of course, we all nodded.
She let us know that today was one of these days for her, but she eventually decided to still step up and got to our meeting (being a first time guest, she knew nobody). And with her 15 years+ experience and hundreds of speeches she witnessed, she said that there are always waiting great rewards for those who show up and step up.
And she said literally “I’ve heard speeches delivered at International Conferences in front of thousands of people but this speech today, Moritz, was one of the most outstanding speeches I’ve ever heard. You are truly gifted in reaching at your audiences heart and I thought every second you were just talking to me. Thank you for inspiring me today.” Wow.
What she didn’t know is that I, too, wasn’t sure whether I would attend at that meeting, or not since I had a very painful last 3 days behind me (I eventually broke one of my ribs and I needed to take quite strong painkillers since then). So for me this metaphor was also very true: I showed up, gave my best and got rewarded 100x more than I had imagined.
The next time you feel tired, unsure, not up to the task: Think about this story. What else could happen, if you just show up? Who can you inspire right now? And what if something magnificent is going to happen if you just make the first step?