A man is not a leader by birth who can deliver speech any time comfortably and confidently. Man acquires this skill provided he is given a chance to give a speech.- Veena Bansal
And I am sure that he doesn’t forget his maiden speech. In spite of his well preparedness, he gets conscious.
It’s natural. Different feelings overpower him such as of fear, anxiety, eagerness and nervousness. Fear is of forgetting matter and people laughing at him. He is scared that he may get so confused that he leaves the speech in lurch and return to Pavillion with a flop show.
When my name was selected to give my maiden speech in Toastmasters Club, I too got conscious. Shall I speak – I asked myself. The immediate reply was a big NO. I made an excuse – I don’t know what is to be said. I was reminded – you are speaking for sure.
I agreed with reluctance inside. Then I was given hints and I was pushed to prepare speech on paper. I penned down some matter. I wrote twice or thrice and felt as if I was applying for a job. I discussed the matter and I was told that it could be a part of the speech. Then, I added some glimpses of my childhood, student life, my parents, my siblings, my married life and my present life including my past times.
On Speech Day, I got ready and reached the venue hoping to be exempted from giving the speech. While climbing the stairs, I saw the picture of blessing Guru Nanak. I, at once, prayed him to save me. Next came the picture of laughing Sai Baba. I felt as if He was wishing me “Best of luck”. This view inspired me. Hesitatingly, I entered the Speech Room and found my name already written on the Agenda Board. Thank God I was the last speaker for the day.
I was composed for a while. I listened to others’ speeches but couldn’t concentrate on any of them because of fear and confusion. When my name was announced to give my speech, my heart started pounding. For a couple of seconds, I didn’t get up from my seat. Then, I was reminded that it was my turn. With OH, I started moving to the podium as slowly and steadily as did the tortoise in The Tortoise and Hare Story.
I looked around perplexed and my tongue started getting dry. To gather strength, I said Good Morning and addressed the audience. Thank God, audience welcomed me with a broad smile. I introduced myself and the matter proceeded.
Suddenly in the midst, I stood silent as if gathering the words in mind. I tried to proceed but couldn’t. I got self conscious. After 2 or 3 seconds gap, I could recharge my battery and spoke whatever struck my mind. Believe me, 2-3 seconds spent like hours when everyone was staring at me in absolutely silent hall. While I continued, my speech went off the track. I noticed some part was not a part of my speech but gone was gone. Leaving it aside, I summed up the matter.
In a hurry to finish, I couldn’t decide what to say at the end. At last, I linked my matter with my present life and wanted to rush back to my seat but waited till the Toastmaster took charge of the stage.
Thank God,the young audience listened to my speech patiently, ignoring my losing confidence. On my return, I didn’t forget to thank Guru Nanak Dev and Sai Baba for enabling me to succeed in my mission. I still can’t believe myself.