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Toastmasters at CSUSB: Finally Won Table Topics


On March 1st, I attended the meeting for Toastmasters at CSUSB and I won my first Table Topics Award! Table Topics is a segment of the meeting when the Table Topics Master comes up with unsuspecting topics for members and guests to do a speech.


The Table Topics speeches last up to 2 minutes.


The Advisor of the club was the Table Topics Master for this meeting and she came up with multiple questions for members and guests to choose from. I volunteered to speak about what I’m most thankful for.


A few weeks ago, I completed my second Advanced Manuals speech for Toastmasters at CSUSB. My speech was about connecting my experiences and realities of being a two-time cancer survivor and hip amputee to the digital world of the inFAMOUS videogame franchise and superhero Cole MacGrath.


You can check out my Nothing is More Powerful Than a Made up Mind: Part 2 speech with Slideshow on my Official YouTube Channel. Here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QBw5KAnRw6s&t=18s


Or on my website. Here: http://www.calmandstrong.net/videos


While walking to my car after completing my second Advanced Manuals speech. I began thinking about how thankful I am for God not letting the chemotherapy kill all my brain cells and I’m still able to be creative.


When it was my turn to speak in front of the audience for Table Topics on March 1st. I chose to talk about how God orchestrated my creativity over the years by strategically helping me build a career as an inspirational speaker.


I said I decided to peruse this journey as an inspirational speaker because of my unique story and I believe I could help people who have been through similar situations. I also said throughout the years, people always asked me why I am doing this.


I said to the audience, “How many people do you know have had cancer twice and had to get their leg amputated during their four years of high school?” Then I said a show of hands, and nobody raised their hand. Then I said “This is why I’m doing this.”


While speaking to the audience, I noticed I got a surprised reaction from a few new guests who never knew I am a cancer survivor. I also said since I started as a member at Toastmasters at CSUSB, I’ve been speaking about my history with cancer and the video game inFAMOUS.


Then I said I know the club is probably tired of me speaking about this topic, but this topic is in my heart. I enjoy talking about my connection with superhero Cole MacGrath, and being inspirational speaker is a great way to tell my unique story. Getting a 9 to 5 job is out of the question for me because I’ve been down that road before and it was not fulfilling for me.


After my speech, I realized I can really shock and touch people emotionally when I speak to a wide audience about my story of being a two-time cancer survivor.


The winner of Table Topics comes from a raffle with everybody in the room, and everybody writes down the name of the person who they felt performed the best Table Topics speech. At the end of the meeting, the President of the club calls out the winner.


It was a tie between myself and another fellow Toastmaster. I was surprised to hear my name because I’ve been a member of Toastmasters at CSUSB for over a year and never won Table Topics.


I was happy I won Table Topics, especially since I spoke about a topic that is near and dear to my heart.


To check out the photo of me and my Toastmasters at CSUSB Table Topics Award, click here: http://www.calmandstrong.net/photos



* When I first walked into the room where the meeting was going to be held. The Advisor of the club asked me to meet her outside the room and asked me if I could be the interim President of Toastmasters at CSUSB. She explained the current President must step down for a couple weeks, and I said ok, but when do I start, and she said next week!


* When she pulled me outside the room, I thought I did something wrong and was going to get kicked me out the club. Turns out, the club feels being an interim President would be a good fit for me.


* I’m still nervous about the situation, but my fellow Toastmasters feel I could do it, and I realized I’ve come a long way since I first started attending and joined the club over a year ago.


* I got an e-mail response from the book publisher I met in 2016, and she said congratulations about me finishing my book. She explained many people tell her they are going to write a book, but never do. She also referred me to her connections, who have resources to help get my book published. I’m also appreciative of all the knowledge she shared with me.


* To check out a sample of my book, click here: http://www.calmandstrong.net/calmandstrong-book-sample

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