Speaking is easy! You just open your mouth and words come out…
Last summer I stumbled upon Worthing Speakers’ Club when they were holding an event called Speech on the Beach. There were maybe 25-30 people there from very different walks of life. The first thing that struck me was what a friendly and encouraging atmosphere there was. There were a few prepared speeches and an activity where you had to think on your feet and just speak on a given theme. A few of the people were very accomplished speakers who said intelligent and witty things in a way that just grabbed you, while others were clearly just starting out on their speaking journey. Every one of them got positive feedback that encouraged them to sharpen their speaking tools a little bit from the point where they were.
I visited the club a couple of times before I decided to become a member, and once I had joined it still took a few months before I dared to make my own first speech. There is no pressure there, you are encouraged to move at your own pace. In the few months that I have been a member I have had fun and learned a lot, both from listening to speeches with feedback and from practising myself.
Since I have been teaching for many years, as well as giving lectures and presentations, standing in front of a crowd doesn’t faze me. I used to have the attitude “Speaking is easy! You just open your mouth and words come out…” My speaking tools definitely need a lot of fine-tuning and Worthing Speakers’ Club is an excellent place to do this.