Archive for the ‘Resources’ Category

Fear Factor

In Essence of Speaking, Resources on December 21, 2010 at 10:52 am

Believe it or not, your chances of dying of stage fright are extremely slim. You might feel as if you are dying on the stage, but chances are good your audience won’t even notice your wobbly knees and sweating armpits. Even the best speakers were once terrified novices, feeling the same symptoms as you when facing an audience. Fear no more! Toastmasters is the best place to learn, to build your confidence, and to push yourself outside your comfort zone. It’s a safe place where there is no penalty for failure!  (Thanks to Toastmaster.org for this ditty!)

When you are ready, visit us at Chamber Chatters for an amazing  Toastmasters experience!


Chatting on The Green

In General Meeting Commentary, Resources on September 20, 2009 at 1:51 pm


This is why people join Chamber Chatters.  We love to shake it up!  On September 16th, we shook it up outside.


We walked down the street from our usual meeting place at the Chamber of Commerce office and held our meeting in the open air.


We had a fabulous time and heard three great speeches.  Here is what we learned:

1)  All else equal, when speaking outside, one must speak a fair degree louder than compared to an inside location.

2)  Just because the lecturn starts in the shade, does not mean it will stay in the shade!

3)  Buses, cars, and other vehicles going by are louder than one would otherwise imagine.  Plan to be interrupted by engines.

4)  Landscapers may be working in the area.  That means noise from hedge trimmers, blowers, and mowers must be added into the mix.

5)  We loved it so much, we’re going to do it again!  Despite the challenges, everyone came away quite enthusiastic about the meeting format.  It worked.  Being outside definitely worked.

6)  Bring sunglasses.




-Wendy Goody

How Facebook Can Spread the Benefits of Toastmasters To Your Friends & Family

In Resources on August 3, 2009 at 3:39 pm

One of my favorite things I learned at training for VP of Public Relations is that it’s the role of every member to use Facebook. With the power of Facebook, we can reach more people to share the Toastmasters experience.

What you can do today to enhance your Facebook profile:

  1. List Toastmasters in your Biography under Activities.
  2. Become a fan of Toastmasters District 57
  3. Find your Toastie-buddies and become friends.
  4. Comment in your “What do you do statement” on
    1. What did you learn today in Toastmasters
    2. Comment about the speech you’re preparing
    3. Ask for ideas for getting a joke for humor master, table topic questions etc…
    4. Invite your friends to a meeting!
  5. Acknowledge a toastie for their wonderful speech and their thought provoking conversations etc.
  6. Streamline your Chamber Chatters posts onto your Facebook page.
  7. Invite your friends to a meeting!

Of course, these are simple principles that can be used in all of your social networks!!!

Let’s connect, let’s be friends, I’d LOVE to learn more about you!

Andrea D. Spence is VP of Public Relations for Toastmasters Chamber Chatters.

Facilitating a Discussion

In Essence of Speaking, Panel Discussions, Resources on June 1, 2009 at 11:10 am


The Moderator musn’t let ONE panelist

hog other panelists’ allotted time!

I have been a participant in many panel discussions, but it is quite different to be the facilitator. Here are a couple of accounts of facilitating when you are not involved in planning – just asked to facilitate.

I was asked to help out on two different panel discussions. The first one was at the last minute. The facilitator canceled. The format and the questions were already established for this hour-long panel and no time to prep. Here are some do’s and don’ts I learned from my experience:

  • Do watch the time for each panelist
  • Do have strategies ready to go to encourage panelist to wrap up
  • Do consider what would be interesting for the audience to learn
  • Do check in with the panelist – make sure they know how much time they have and the format
  • Do make the best of the situation
  • Don’t have the questions at the end for all panelist – too boring
  • Don’t let all the panelist have the same questions – tailor the questions to each panelist’s  area of expertise

One of the panelists was very charismatic and chatty and was talking much too much – I could not get in to interject. I finally had to walk up close to the table and look him straight in the eye. He got the point and made a joke and wrapped up.

The second panel I facilitated,  I  had a bit of time to plan other than the group of panelist was already established. I had no knowledge ahead of time what was each of their presentations. All I knew was that it was a Sex Tech Conference. The 3 panelists were all from different organizations discussing their method of sex education for 90 minutes total.

Originally, they were told to speak for 25 minutes each with questions at the end. I felt it would be more interesting to have the questions after each panelist – people are more compelled to ask questions right away rather than having to wait.  The panelists were flexible and open to my suggestions and said they could keep to the suggested time and format.

But things always happen……the elevator was backed up and people could not get to the 5th floor…..people were trailing in for the first 20 minutes. I started 10 minutes late to accommodate the elevator back up.  The first group had planned an overview of their program and a relay race for the audience. They had seven wooden models (woodys) and folks had to race to un-package, put on and lube seven condoms!  I was worried about the time.

With starting late and the first panelist’s relay race the panel discussion went really well and finished on time. The questions after each panelist was the way to go. I got some great feedback.

I consulted with one of my fellow Toasties ahead of time and reviewed a TM “Facilitating Discussion” manual – a little prep and planning was a big help for a successful discussion.


Embrace the Silence!

In Personal Growth, Resources on May 31, 2009 at 12:36 pm

No Noise

The power of silence is truly underrated!

I used to be as bad as the next person… The first thing that I used to do when I entered a room… or got into my car… or went anywhere quiet… was automatically turn on some NOISE…  99.9% of our NOISE options come from: televisions, computers, music devices or phones.  (Note: You get bonus points if you listen and watch your NOISE selection simultaneously.)

It doesn’t matter if we’re not paying attention… It doesn’t matter if the NOISE is neither educational nor entertaining.  It doesn’t even matter if the NOISE is distracting us from doing what we should be doing.  We have conditioned ourselves to prefer NOISE over being left ‘alone’ with ourselves, thoughts or tasks.

If you want more Time, Peace & Enlightenment in your Life, try turning off the NOISE… and

Embrace the Silence!

Stephen V. Richardson

The Positivity Challenge

In Personal Growth, Resources on May 31, 2009 at 12:17 pm

What if you could win $10,000,000 on the condition that (starting right now) you had to be 100% Positive for the next 24 hours?  Could you do it?

Before you automatically answer “Yes!” and start dreaming of how you’d spend that money, here is a clarification of the rules:
  • You are held 100% responsible for the positivity of your environment (internal and external… outgoing and incoming)
  • Every action must be positive
  • Every conversation must be positive
  • Every question must be positive
  • Every song, TV program, website, article, book must be positive
  • Every person in your surrounding ‘world’ must be positive
  • Every thought must be positive
Most people say that they want the world to be a better, more positive place…  Don’t you?  With all of the negativity we initiate and allow in our lives… what are we doing to make the world a better, more positive place?
While you nor I will probably be collecting our $10,000,000 any time soon…  let’s try anyway by accepting the Positivity Challenge Every Day.
– Stephen V. Richardson –

The “Magic” in Vision Boards – Back by Popular Demand!

In Resources, Speeches on May 29, 2009 at 3:07 pm

From my Vision Board speech on March 11th.

I mentioned to a friend that I was going to be working on my Vision Board over the weekend. She said something to the effect of, “you silly girl, you believe in that stuff?”  I know why she felt the way she did, since there are many people who feel that Vision Boards are some type of magic…or those who create them think that magical things will happen just by placing some pictures on a poster board.

Vision Boards are not about expecting magic to happen, unless you consider your dreams to be magical, then maybe so…

Back to my friend’s  skepticism and the The Secret, which is not really a secret after all.  The Secret is about The Law of Attraction. Its main premise is that:  What we think about comes about – thoughts become things – and we attract what we focus energy on. This is where some people start to dismiss these ideas as “magical”, but the “magic” behind Vision Boards is your dreams, goals and desires.

  • How many people have written goals?
  • How many keep their goal-list updated on a semi-consistent basis?
  • What makes goal writing so powerful?

As we  identify what our goals are, the likelihood of achieving them increases greatly!  Why is this?  My own theory – and the theory of The Law of Attraction –  is that we should focus both our thoughts and actions towards those goals.  If I don’t know what my goals are, how do I know what I want to achieve? Only 5% of the population writes down their goals.

Vision Boards are simply a visual representation of our goals. When you surround yourself with images of who you want to become or what you want to have, then your life changes to match those images and desires.  A vision board is a blueprint for the kind of life you’d like to create for yourself — a visual representation of your desired future.

What do vision board looks like?  Mine shows a car, exercise, adventure, travel, knives from Pampered Chef, cooking demonstrations, and things I want to achieve.  My goals are written as if they have already happened. Writing goals in the past tense is something that I learned over the years. It helps me to feel what it is like to have already accomplished the goal, which will help bring it to fruition.

Let’s say you are ready to create your very own vision board. Where do you start? I started by writing down all of my goals. I went through my journals from the last few years and consolidated my goals into one list.  This allowed me to see which goals I had achieved, which ones were written down year after year and were still yet to be achieved and which ones I wanted to focus on for this year, or in the coming years.

I used magazines to find pictures, phrases and words that were appealing to me. Some of the items I clipped weren’t on my goals sheet.  There are no rules when it comes to creating a vision board;  just add what speaks to you or is visually appealing to you. There is a reason why you are being attracted to the images and words; they mean something even if you don’t understand why.  Adding phrases or affirmations works well too.

Select images that are:

  • Easy to understand
  • Emotional
  • Personal
  • Relevant to your present life

You will also need poster board,  stick glue (not Elmers), and scissors.

Once you have your pictures, clippings etc… just let the layout come naturally. Once you have everything in place, begin gluing all of your clippings and images down to the poster board. Once you have completed your vision board, place it in a location that allows you to see it every day.

I hope I have taken a little bit of the mystery out of Vision Boards and allowed you to see the “Magic” in them that will eventually be the things in your life that you will have once you have identified your goals and are focused on bringing those goals to life, which is definitely magic!

– Lanette


My Vision Board

Business Book List from the Toilet Paper Entrepreneur

In Resources on May 25, 2009 at 8:20 pm

In reading the 800 CEO Read Blog one of the recent posts discusses an interesting business reading list. I would recommend reviewing the list and from there a few other items to note. One is to continue reading the 800 CEO Blog and the other is to check out more on the Toilet Paper Entrepreneur… No, I am not making this up 🙂


The Roll.