While considering a blog that has discussed landing on the moon, car purchasing approaches, books, movies, football board games, or how Christmas came to be celebrated on December 25th, it might seem odd to see a post encouraging the emotional literacy that I’ve come to know from my time learning to speak publicly, as an adult, through an organization called Toastmasters International. https://www.toastmasters.org/
A longer term goal that I have had professionally has been to lead processes and people, which can be a funny concept to people that understand my ISFJ personality type as revealed by this personality test: https://www.16personalities.com/
Think about being led by Vin Diesel, Beyoncé Knowles, Halle Berry, or Selena Gomez … All are reliable folks that bring loyalty and enthusiasm to supporting others, though a tendency to meekness, frustration, and an aversion to change do not suggest a propensity for leading people through situations where leadership should prevail.
Affording me the opportunity to take leadership roles in my Toastmasters club, speaking regularly has offered me the chance to confront feelings of meekness, humility, and an unwillingness to speak out about things that I know are wrong. The first step in getting comfortable with change is to think through changes that I want to make in the world, and then speaking about them.
Toastmasters has offered me the opportunities to push the limits of my personality type. My tendency towards meekness may never change, though continuing to accept that things must remain unchanged with no effort to grow is a choice. Toastmasters, for one thing, allows me to peel back layers of timidity in my “meekness onion.”
Right now, I am taking satisfaction from actual growth that I can see in my willingness “to put myself out there.” Peeling one ring of the onion, right now that ring is practicing the technique of confronting my timidness. Further growth may get me to the leadership goal of leading process(es) and/or people. At the core of this onion, Toastmasters International is helping me getting to the core of that goal.
Matt – Wednesday, January 4, 2017