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Tower Toasters Newsletter

November/December/January 2007  Issue 3

Tower Toasters at District 66 Conference Left to right: Club Prsident, Regina Raimona, Club VPE, Tricia Leyden and Newly Elected Lt. Gov. Marketing, Jerry Keast

Upcoming Events: • Area Holiday Bash-

December 7th @ 12 Noon, Black Finn (Bring your business cards.) • Next Meeting- December

11th @ 12 Noon, 4th floor • December 15, 2007 @ 6, Speech Marathon, Contact Tricia Leyden • Meeting- December 18th

@ 12 Noon, 4th floor New comments about District Conference being the icing on the cake for a wonderful year. ~Regina Raimona, President



• Officers Training- Jan. 7th

2008 in Richmond

"The real art of conversation is not to Check our website for say thedetails right thing at further and events the right place but to @ leave unsaid the wrong thing at the tempting mement.” ~Dorothy Nevill

See page 5 for details

Overcoming Speaking Anxiety in Meetings & Presentations Do your knees feel like Gumby's when you have to get up and speak in front of a group? Do you feel like the next words out of your mouth are going to be the dumbest words ever uttered by a human? If you said yes to either of the questions above, be advised, you have a full-blown case of stage fright, says Lenny Laskowski, a professional speaker and President of LJL Seminars. According to the book of lists, the fear of speaking in public is the #1 fear of all fears. The fear of dying is #7! Over 41% of people have some fear or anxiety dealing with speaking in front of groups. People who have this fear can experience all kinds of symptoms: Sweaty palms, accelerated heart rate, memory loss and even difficulty in breathing. Some of the world's most famous presenters have freely admitted to nervousness and stage fright. Mark Twain said it best, "There are two types of speakers: those that are nervous and those that are liars". Everyone, even experienced speakers, has some anxiety when speaking in front of a group of people. This is perfectly normal. The best way to deal with this anxiety is to first acknowledge that this fear is perfectly normal and you are not alone. To reduce your fear, you need to make sure you properly and thoroughly prepare yourself before you speak. Proper preparation and rehearsal can help to reduce this fear by about 75%. Proper breathing techniques can further reduce this fear by another 15%. Your mental state accounts for the remaining 10%. Below are just a few suggestions you should use to overcome your speaking anxiety. The first and most important of all is preparation. I like to think of it as the 9 P's:

Prior Proper Preparation Prevents Poor Performance (for the) Person Putting on the Presentation. Nothing will relax you more than to know you are properly prepared. Below are 10 steps you can take to reduce your speech anxiety. 1.

Know the room - become familiar with the place in which you will speak. Arrive early and walk around the room including the speaking area. Stand at the lectern, speak into the microphone. Walk around where the audience will be seated. Walk from where you will be seated to the place where you will be speaking.


Know the Audience - If possible, greet some of the audience as they arrive and chat with them. It is easier to speak to a group of friends than to a group of strangers.


Know Your Material - If you are not familiar with your material or are uncomfortable with it, your nervousness will increase. Practice your speech or presentation and revise it until you can present it with ease.


Learn How to Relax - You can ease tension by doing exercises. Sit comfortable with your back straight. Breathe in slowly, hold your breath for 4 to 5 seconds, then slowly exhale. To relax your facial muscles, open your mouth and eyes wide, then close them tightly.


Visualize Yourself Speaking - Imagine yourself walking confidently to the lectern as the audience applauds. Imagine yourself speaking, your voice loud, clear and assured. When you visualize yourself as successful, you will be successful.


Realize People Want You To Succeed - All audiences want speakers to be interesting, stimulating, informative and entertaining. They want you to succeed - not fail.


Don't apologize For Being Nervous - Most of the time your nervousness does not show at all. If you don't say anything about it, nobody will notice. If you mention your nervousness or apologize for any problems you think you have with your speech, you'll only be calling attention to it. Had you remained silent, your listeners may not have noticed at all


Concentrate on Your Message - not the medium - Your nervous feelings will dissipate if you focus your attention away from your anxieties and concentrate on your message and your audience, not yourself.


Turn Nervousness into Positive Energy - the same nervous energy that causes stage fright can be an asset to you. Harness it, and transform it into vitality and enthusiasm.

10. Gain Experience - Experience builds confidence, which is the key to effective speaking. Most beginning speakers find their anxieties decrease after each speech they give. If the fear of public speaking causes you to prepare more, then the fear of speaking serves as it's own best antidote. Remember, "He who fails to prepare is preparing for failure - so Prepare, Prepare, Prepare" Tower Tower Toasters, Toasters, Club Club 1002826 102826

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G Ge ett RRe ea ad dyy,, G Ge ett SSe ett,, SSp pe ea akk!! BByy TTrriicciia a LLeeyyd deenn

My tenure with Toastmasters is actually quite short. I’ve only been in this fantastic organization for not even a year. And back in September I decided I would attend the area contest since my home club, Tower Toasters, was hosting. Turns out, they were in need of volunteers and I signed up to be a judge. I knew a little bit about contests and how they were run since I attended the district contest a few months before. But, this time it was different – this was a humorous speech contest! First up: Leslie Garrett “Is This What Getting Older Is All About?” Leslie spoke about something most of us all fear – getting older. Her use of many hysterical props and thorough content that everyone could relate to, made her speech entertaining and a joy to hear. Second: Steve Nash “The Single Discrimination” Steve spoke about another subject that many people can identify with – enduring the pains from your loved ones about being single. Steve recounted various moments when his friends and family attempted to do or say anything they could to fix him up with someone because being single is just not normal! And last, but certainly not least: Ralph Compton “The Admiral’s Management Principles” I didn’t think I could laugh at a speech as hard as I did, but Ralph definitely took the cake. Once again, the theme that made each of these speeches a success was taking a topic that people could widely relate to – and who can’t relate to being in a less than desirable work environment? Ralph’s delivery and his tone of voice conjured roars of laughter and side-splitting scenarios. And the winner is….Leslie Garrett! Turns out getting older is quite a hot topic that struck a chord with both the judges and audience alike. In addition to the very exiting humorous speech contest, there was also an evaluation contest as well. Our very own, Camille Coffey, secretary of Tower Toasters, Melissa Simmons and Leslie Garrett participated and gave the target speaker, James Kinlaw, great feedback and encouragement. Melissa Simmons took the top prize with honors.

33 RR’’ss O OFF EEV VA ALLUUA ATTIIN NG G:: Review... To give the best review you can, consider the speaker’s personal goals as well as the official evaluation guide. While the guidelines for evaluation are beneficial, the speaker may be more interested in developing skills not listed. Before the presentation, determine with the speaker what his/her goals are as they relate to the project’s objectives. In your review you should answer the question, “Did the speaker accomplish what he/she set out to?” If so, publicly acknowledge that fact in the evaluation. On the other hand, if you have doubts on this aspect, you may wish to include your comments in your written evaluation or discuss them privately with the speaker, later. Reward. Richly praise the aspects that were particularly good in the speech. Use words like exemplary, outstanding, effective, admirable, praiseworthy, pleasing or beneficial. Try to avoid overuse of vague generalities such as good, very good and excellent. It’s a good idea to explain why the aspect was worthy of note by quoting the exact words or re-enacting a gesture. Respond. Your role as an evaluator is to respond to the speaker’s message. Not by challenging what was said, but through an analysis of what you heard, what you saw and what you felt: -----

What you heard. What words were used? What you saw. Did the speaker use effective gestures and appropriate body language? What you felt. What emotions were felt by you as a listener? What images could you see in your mind? Were you moved to action? Toastmaster Magazine, November 2007

I am looking forward to attending many more speech contests in the future especially if they are as fun and enjoyable as this one was.

Tower Toasters Toasters,,Club Club1002826 1002826

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Words of Wisdom If you don’t go after what you want, you’ll never have it. If you don’t ask, the answer is always no. If you don’t step forward, you’re always in the same place. ~Nora Roberts

Honorable Mentions

Toastmasters, A’Daye Foster and Regina Raimona “Dishing Out” for the November Pot Luck Lunch with Michael Kowaski at Let’s Dish in Virginia Beach. It’s a tasty experience! Check out their website at

Congratulations to Tricia Leyden, our Vice President of A Note from the President and VP of Public Relations Education and her husband John on buying their first home! Andres Vezquez, on We would like to wish all our TM friends a wonderful and safe Holiday Season! Enjoy each moment you can with the passing his Insurance Exam people you love…your friends and family. for New York Life. Regina Raimona completed her Competent Communication Manual! Geri Collins was featured in The Virginian Pilot and on Channel 10 and 13 News for her trip to Jena, Louisiana. Geri has since formed an organization called GMWSOC (Grandmothers, Mothers & Women Saving Our Children) to help save our youth and to help keep them on the right track. You can find out more about her mission at

Great Job!!

Nothing replaces having a friend. Tower Toasters, Club 1002826

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Suggestion Box: If you have any information that you would like to see featured in our next Newsletter, please contact… A’Daye Foster @ (757) 6408249 or email me at:

Come join us at our next meeting: Tuesday December 11, 2007 @12 Noon 999 Waterside Drive, Suite 415 ~Nora Roberts Norfolk, VA 23517

Honorable Mentions Web Site: Published By: Regina Raimona Editor: A’Daye Foster

Happy Holidays by Poet DeVine

We seem to have lost the spirit of Christmas amid the scandal and sadness this year. So many things have happened in the world it's hard to be filled with good cheer.

A Special Thank You

We grumble and groan and complain, it's true treat each other with indignity and scorn We see the world with eyes tightly shut never seeing that gift that was born.

American Red Cross

for Your Support Crema Let’s Dish 93.7 BOB FM

A gift that can lighten a stressful load or clear prejudice from our eyes a gift that we have the power to give it comes in every shape and size. Please pass on this gift - just give it away but hold some of it close in your heart. For we are together but a brief time in life give it away before we must part. On Christmas this year, I wish for you the special gift we can use each day It's the gift of love - of hope - of peace that increases as you give it away.

Join us at our next Toastmasters meeting, where “practice makes perfect”

H Heeaalltthh W Waattcchh Daily Health Task Lists "He who has health has hope, and he who has hope has everything.” ~ Arabian Proverb       

Move More. Make it a daily challenge to find ways to move your body. Protect your skin. Sun block should be applied on face, neck, arms and hands even in the dead of winter. It protects against climatic toxins too. Moisturize skin daily. Eat fruits, vegetables, grains, low-fat dairy products and small amounts of protein. Avoid sweets and other processed foods. Meditate or spend a minimum of five minutes daily in quiet time. Find your spiritual self. Discover what inspires you, raises your level of consciousness, motivates you, and satisfies your soul. Exercise your brain. Read, study, solve problems, and learn new skills. As does the body, the brain atrophies with lack of use. Hug somebody.

Tower Toasters, Club 1002826

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NewsLetter 11-07  

Tower Toasters Newsletter Nov. 2007