Dilip Abayasekara has one more lesson to offer about contests:
You learn lessons that apply to every phase of your life
Speech contests can be learning laboratories of life. Through my participation in speech contests, I have learned the value of approaching life as a student; the invaluable role a good mentor can play; how to receive a multitude of evaluations and choose the ones that are consistent with who I am, and the message I want to share; the value of friends who encourage and believe in me; principles for researching, planning, and carrying out any task worth doing; how to be a gracious winner and how to take a broad perspective when my best isn’t good enough to win. Most of these insights don’t come easily, but they will come the more earnestly you put yourself in the competitive track. Then they will spill over to every sphere of your activities – with family, friends, and associates. These are yours for the learning when you become a speech contestant
There are four lessons in all in Dilip’s message:
- You accelerate your growth as a speaker
- You obtain a realistic appraisal of your skills
- You discover the power of the spoken word
- You learn lessons that apply to every phase of your life
That’s a powerful quartet packing a powerful invitation to success. As Dilip says, “The birthright of every Toastmaster is becoming the best that he or she can become. So if you are eligible to compete, I urge you to take hold of the great opportunities in speech contests and give it your all.” Will you accept the invitation?
Brinker Toastmasters holds its International Speech Contest on February 23. Vice President Education Jim Wilson can tell you more about preparing.