By Marcheta Gardner, DTM, Club Retention Chair
Ever wonder if what you said is what others heard? Or, “did I really just say that”? Or “what did I really mean?” I used to be in my head so much, I tried hard not to say anything… and was very successful at it!
I grew up in Oklahoma City, OK. Yes, I’m “Sooner born and Sooner bred!” I moved to Texas to live with my husband. We met at the University of Oklahoma and decided to do life together. We have two young adult children, a 28-year-old son and 22-year-old daughter. They are both successful in their own lives.
Starting my career, I knew I needed help! Fortunately, I was connected to a group of others that were of the same mindset and we all decided to charter a club. We had heard about Toastmasters through one of the Directors and worked to develop our club. We were fortunate in that so many people saw the value, we grew to 5 clubs in our company alone! Then things changed… people moved, changed jobs, and we were down to 1 club.
This is where my story begins. I had been helped by Toastmasters -I found my voice. I wanted others to experience that freedom and flexibility. Many come to Toastmasters for one reason and find many more to stay.
In Toastmasters, I’ve had wonderful opportunities to meet phenomenal people, leadership opportunities, personal and professional growth. In fact, it’s afforded me the ability to speak at various levels, with various people. To say it’s a confidence booster would be putting it lightly.
Today, I’m currently a member of 3 clubs: Microsoft 365 Toastmasters, Speak Up New Life and OCC Toastmasters! Each club has its own unique personality. I’m being stretched and learning so much from each club. I welcome the accountability in each.
Take it from someone who literally put my hands over my mouth to now sitting on the edge of my seat with anticipation at the opportunity to speak! Do Toastmasters for you… Be Toastmasters for everyone else!