The first time I attended a toastmasters meeting, I witnessed true excellence on the stage. It has been over a year and I have been trying to achieve that level of excellence on stage. I am in the quest of such excellence. It can only be achieved by attending meetings because week after week there is excellence exhibited on stage by all the speakers.
I am pretty sure that with each meeting there is a bountiful amount of learning for each and every one of the members. The level exhibited by the speakers can only be achieved through immense amounts of practice.
This reminds me of a time where I was trying to excel at stroking the ball in the cover region. This was the time when I was in the prestigious Brijesh Patel Cricket Academy, my dad had put me there after I had begged him for more than a month in my summer holidays. We had this coach who was the perfect Virender Sehwag, looked like him, walked like him, played like him. He was the one you should be scared about and his coaching was equally awesome. The academy had put me in his net. For some kids this would be a problem, for me I was ecstatic as I had got an amazing coach. So the coaching went on, one fine day he came up to the bowlers and told them to bowl full length outside off, the driving length. Then he took a bat and came near the batsman and held the bat near the batsman’s back, to all the batsman he said, “If you get scared of the ball, the bat will hit you”. That was pretty intimidating. My friends did pretty decent, nobody got hit by the bat so it was alright, now it was my turn. He told me the same thing but it sounded even more scarier, The first ball came, it was full and on the pads, I flicked
the ball and it nearly hit the coach. I thought he was going to shout at me, to my surprise he shouted at the bowler. The next ball arrived just as the coach had instructed, I drove the ball but didn’t middle it. The same thing happened the next couple of balls. The fifth ball that I faced, I middled it and he was happy and said great shot. I had finally perfected the cover drive. My quest in excellence at mastering the cover drive had begun.
Similarly each speech or role is like a cover drive, each time you take up a role have a goal of excelling at it. The role may be as small as a timer, your goal should be to excel at it. Sometimes you may go wrong, but do not care about those moments. Care about the ones where you did a great job.