Successful? Why, yes I am.

Saturday, March 31, 2007

Speech #2 for Toastmasters

Okay, so I have to give a 5-7 speech the title in my 'communication and leader program' states project 2 as being "Organise your speech".

Second para states
"As a speaker your role is to tell others about yoru ideas and occasionally persuade them to take soem action. Your audience will be more receptive to yoru efforts if you take the time to assemble your thougths in a logical manner. Well organised speeches have several benefits..."

So what I wanted to talk about was Personal development and especially focusing on consistency and taking action.

So here goes;

Fellow toastmasters and guests. Personal Development. In particular Personal Development and Success. What is it and whats it good for??

I came to this question after pondering over another question.

Now I’ll just quickly go offtopic for a moment.

It is a question that most people probably ask themselves at least once in their lifetimes. [Pause]

"What is the meaning of life??" Now your probably sitting here, wondering What the!? [Pause], this guy is only in his mid 20's and he's wondering about the meaning of life, WHATS WRONG WITH HIM?!

I'll answer that question later..... Not about whats wrong me, but my take on the meaning of life...

Back on topic….

Success. [Short Pause]. I think it'd be fair for me to say that most if not all of us want success. We want to be successful in our lives. We want success in careers, relationships, money, family etc.
If you type in 'success' OR 'successful' in google, you'll find numerous sites that will encourage you to take on personal development. Basically, there is a strong correlation between personal development and success.

Okay great. But this leads to more questions. If I undertake personal development what will it give me exactly? How does persoal development work?? Are there any side affects with personal development??

First lets define personal development;
As a rough definition found on wikipediea for self help it states:
The term self-help can refer to any case or practice whereby an individual or a group attempts self-guided improvement[1]—economically, intellectually or emotionally. The basis for self-help is often self-reliance, publicly available information, or support groups where people with similar problems join together.

Personal development comes in many forms, for example, exercising, wanting to lose weight, OR learning about investing for the future, OR toastmasters, wanting to overcome fears of public speaking etc.

Now these are aspects of personal development, and PD generally begins by people buying self-help books and starting their journey from there on.

Based on numerous books, blogs Ive read, and CD audio programs and podcasts Ive listened to, PD revolves around the following core ideas.

  1. Persistence
  2. Goal Setting
  3. Strong beliefs
  4. Determination
  5. Positive thinking
  6. Visualisation
  7. Discipline
  8. Courage
  9. Patience
  10. Networking
  11. Time Management
  12. Hard work
  13. Confidence
  14. Motivation etc

AND the list can go on and on.....

This is where problems start creeping in…. [pause]

What ends up happening, is you read one self-help, it gets you motivated, energised hyped up. You want more. You rush out to buy another book/audio/program. That book gives you another kick in the pants, gets you hyped up again.

This is the first problem. The motivation high that you get after you read/listen to these books/CDs only lasts a short while. You crave for another new book which will give you another short motivation high. You become dependant on getting that 'high" from these books/CDs. I kid you not, its an addiction. It probably explains also why these personal development gurus are multimillionares, they’re like legal drug dealers!

Going deeper into the problem; is how these ideas and principles are presented and sold to eager personal development newbie such as yours truly. As an example this is how most personal development material is sold "Hard-work is the key to success"; OR "positive thinking is the key to success" OR "Visualisation is the key to success".

What this sort of thing ends up doing is it creates confusion and narrow-mindedness.

(Maybe more can be said here…??)

Let me further clarify the issue. Think of the previous mentioned points as ingredients of a personal development recipe. Now lets think of a recipe for an omellete.

Roughly speaking an omellete contains the following:

  1. Eggs
  2. onions
  3. tomatoes
  4. chillies
  5. salt and pepper.

How does one make an omellete? It involves breaking the eggs, cutting up onion/tomato/chilly pieces, beating up a mix of the eggs, onions, tomatoes, chillies. Frying the mix in a hot pan, while turning till its golden and then adding salt/pepper for taste.

So what determines that you will make an omellette the same each time?? (PAUSE and look at audience)

It would be taking the correct steps in sequential order that would result in consistency.

To quote Brian Kim "Instead of treating these priciples as seperate from one another or worse yet, focussing in on only one concept or priciple and blocking out the rest, youve got to see how all these pieces fit in the BIG PICTURE"

Lets think about toastmasters. Lets say we joined toastmasters to overcome our fears of public speaking. If we consult our experienced colleagues (point to Darren OR Marcel) they will tell you that Toastmasters will require of you;

  1. Persistence
  2. Goal Setting
  3. Strong beliefs
  4. Determination
  5. Positive thinking
  6. Visualisation
  7. Discipline
  8. Courage
  9. Patience
  10. Networking
  11. Time Management
  12. Hard work
  13. Motivation etc

Now that is almost the same list I had mentioned earlier. To succeed in toastmasters, you cannot just say that with “hardwork” I can succeed, or with “strong faith” I will succeed. These are components that make up the bigger picture. [Pause]

Alright so what does one do to succeed that involves most of the above mentioned points.

From personal experience (Now mind you Im still learning, and there is a lot to learn) I said earlier with the omellete recipe that taking correct steps in sequential order would result in consistency, well the same applies with personal development;

It can be summarised as follows:

  1. Have a burning desire to accomplish your goal or purpose (whatever that maybe)
  2. Have faith that you will succeed.
  3. Organise a definite plan AND take action on that plan.
  4. Never give up until you achieve your chosen goal/purpose

The key to all four steps is consistency.

If anyone goes through these steps consistently, success in achieving that goal is guaranteed!


So to conclude. Personal Development should be a must for everyone.

Now provided if you find a teaching/methodology attractive, stick with it, and be consistent when you practice it. There may not be one correct method or person who has the secret. There are many great teachers out there, its upto you and I to find them (they are among family/friends/relatives/work colleagues/toastmasters)

If the advice they give resonates with you, take action, and be consistent when you apply it.

To answer my earlier my question “What is the meaning of life”…. (pause) I cant tell you that!. But what I can tell you, and I sincerely believe this, “your life is what you make of it”. [Say slowly for emphasis]

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Monday, March 26, 2007

Sufferring mental/writers block

So Ive got myself signed to do my second toastmasters speech next Monday and I cant think of what to write and/or where to begin.

I do know that I want to speak about personal development and its different aspects. I want to present from a purely practical point of view.

I was thinking the title of the speech could be "Personal Development: Whats it good for?"

I think I'll visit and and collect 10 or so articles and make a speech from that.

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Providing value??

How does one go about providing value to others?

Something Im going to think about over the next few days. See if I can get some inspiration towards 'pursuing my passion'.

Head over to and look up the blog entry on Kirk Nugent. Very inspiring and motivating story on Kirk, who pursued his passion of presenting his poetry.

Something to think about and write about :)

30 day trial

Starting a new 30 day trial from today. To write something new everyday.

The aim to develop a little bit of creative thinking and writing. Ultimately I want to use this to help me think and write new material for Toastmasters.

Monday, March 19, 2007


So its 12pm at the moment and Ive got about 4.5 hours till toastmasters later this evening. Im going to listen and go through at least first 4 Photoreading CDs (I bought the photoreading course a few months back). Ive been very disorganised in regards to going through the course and applying the learnt information.

Having read some recent articles on, there was an interesting post on the two most common traits some of America's richest persons have.

  1. Regular exercise
  2. Daily reading. Most averaging 2+hours per day.
These two points were enough to get me off my backside and start up the photoreading course. I intend to do a lot of reading in the course of my life. Especially since I work in the telecommunications industry, changes happen often and FAST. Thus to keep upto date and stay ahead, a lot of reading is required.

I'll keep the blog posted. :)

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Oooh Yea! Skipped rope for 25 min!

Major achievement for me, today I was able to skip rope with relative ease for 25 min. and then do three sets of 10 pushups.

Im getting very close to my goal of being able to skip rope for 30 minutes.

Oh and I checked my resting heart rate last night before falling asleep, and its dropped down to 50bpm, before it was 57bpm about a month back.

Now this is progress! Im very pleased.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

March, the month of the bills! argh

Great, just great.

This month is really costing me more than Id planned.

Last year I started an ING online account to cover costs for yearly costs like, car service, insurance, rego etc. Well it seems I underestimated.

I got my car serviced today at a Holden dealer, they charged me $700+. $300+ was just for labour costs!!! Although im displeased with the cost, Im going to start to learn car maintenance for myself.
They were going to charge me $300 just for brake/pad change!!

Guess how much I have to pay for the compsulsory insurance..... another $600.
The car is under my dads name, but funnily, the other family car, a 2005 Falcon, he only has to pay $400. Im like WTF?!

Seriously by end of this month my bank account is going to be empty and Im going to have to file for bankruptcy.