Miscellaneous: Here’s a toast to speaking group

I’d heard of a group called Toastmasters before, and always envisioned a bunch of business people who liked to listen to themselves talk. Not in my wildest dreams could I image myself as one of them.

I was persuaded by a friend this year to attend a new Toastmasters Club that was forming on Whidbey. Let me admit it, I was wrong. I found out that Toastmasters with people just like me was all about learning to feel comfortable in front of a group, and that’s accomplished through encouragement and easy-to-hear advice. I found out that everyone is in the same boat, our hearts always pounding at first.

I’m a writer and get nervous standing up to read from my own book for heaven’s sake. I finally got tired of going through life avoiding all situations that might require me to speak; this small, friendly group has helped me get over a lot of that anxiety.

The few seasoned speakers are great role models for those of us who hem and haw our way through a three-minute talk. It seems like it would be a godsend to those who have to give presentations for their business.

Whidbey Island Toastmasters meets every other Tuesday in the Coupeville Elementary School library at 7 p.m., and they welcome guests and new members. Contact Susan Stockard for more information, 720-2777.

Carol Wiseman