Toastmasters & Me A mental war waged between my emotions & ambitions at the Toastmasters battlefield.
One of the hardest decisions weâ€™ll ever face in life is choosing whether to walk away or try harder. Ever felt the weight of a giant boulder on your head? A weight so heavy, you feel your head sinking into your neck and your skull cracking in the process. Now imagine holding that weight in the depths of the ocean, unable to breath, unable to swim, unable to run! Telling everybody this is how I felt during my first public speaking opportunity at the Toastmasters club would be an understatement. My intellect was in a state of confusion and being a fighter by birth I was trying to come out of that confusion as my emotions, which will never lie to us, were screaming at me loudly not to succumb to the fear. And I survived! I managed to transform my emotional call for not bending down in front of fear to my thought to conquer! Reflecting over the train of confusing emotions I put myself through on that day, I'm glad I decided to put myself through it. Many a times, we reach the so called crossroads in our lives. Crossroads that lead to two different destinations. That day too, I was at one such crossroad in my life. The first road looked wide, comfortable and very easy. The other could not even be defined as a path! It was just wilderness. Unexplored and uncertain, nobody knows what to expect from that one. The first is the road of escapism. The easy way out. Many a times in our lives, we choose the easy way out. We fear the uncertainty and it is this fear that drives us through this road of escapism and ultimately it is this same road which keeps us away from unlocking our true potential.
We limit ourselves from exploring our own capabilities because somewhere deep in our minds, we've convinced ourselves of our incapability to move ahead through the unexplored and the uncertain. However, on that fateful day, I somehow managed not to limit myself to this belief that was embedded deep in my mind too and I chose to explore the wilderness. That day I learnt an important lesson which has guided my life ever since. It is the nature of the human mind to resist the uncertain, but again, this very same mind is also capable of conquering the uncertain. The difference lies simply in showing the courage to take a conscious decision instead of an easy decision, when we reach such crossroads. Life happens once. Live it and Love it! I chose to go out there, outside my comfort zone, facing my fears and standing in front of an unknown crowd, as a convict awaiting judgment and to test my courage. I wished to attract a crowd, not because I'm an extrovert or I'm over the top or I'm oozing with charisma, in fact I donâ€™t have any of these. I did it simply because I wanted to conquer my fear and take that first step towards unlocking our capabilities. And you know what I did next? I chose to join Toastmasters.