An interview with one of our new members
We talked to one of our new members, Hana Plevova, asking her why she joined and her thoughts on the club now that she is now well on her way to confident speaking in public – and in her second language!
How did you hear about TM and what made you come?
To be honest I did not know anything about Toastmasters. I was browsing the web looking for social meetups in Worthing and Worthing Speakers Club popped up. I checked it on the website, found the meeting place and decided to come and see for myself. This might sound silly but the biggest motivation to come was that it was not far from where I live and I could walk there.
How was your first meeting?
I was not sure what to expect. But everyone was very welcoming. I took part in the warm up and the table topics. I was very nervous and my hands were shaking. Then the evaluations were very interesting, encour-aging and supportive. That made me think that coming here and practising speaking in front of a group of people could help me to overcome my fear of speaking and help me become more confident. I decided to join the club right after the first meeting.
You have taken the role of timekeeper a few times. What other roles are you looking to take?
Warm up and table topics – Table topics are so much fun.
How was your icebreaker speech?
The icebreaker was better than I thought it would be. I was still nervous but after finishing it I calmed down completely. I think now I understand when they say: practise, practise, practise. I had practised a lot and repeated my speech several times a day. Friends were also very helpful they listened to my speech and gave me feedback.
English is not your first language. Do you think this makes it more difficult than it would be for a native English speaker? Are you fully comfortable?
I see it as a challenge. I take it as a part of everyday learning. I enjoy the discussions on grammar and language in general. I want to learn and improve myself. I am comfortable in English even if I don’t understand all the words. I can always translate them. I enjoy learning something new every day. Whether it is meeting new people, seeing new things or learning new words. That increases my vocabulary which is always good. I will never forget the word “gargantuan”. It was a new word for me and now when I think of Toastmasters, the first thought that comes into my mind is gargantuan.