Same reasons, a new season!


After 7 years of hibernation, I joined a Toastmasters club in Belmont ,California.  I delived my ice-breaker speech recently. Below is the speech script.

Objective : Introduce yourself to the audience

Time : 4 – 6 Minutes


You never get a second chance to make a first impression. I don’t know who said that, all I know is that’s not true in the world of Toastmasters. I delivered my first ice breaker speech in 2003. This is my second chance to make a first impression in my second home club. When I look back and review my life situation between these two ice breaker speeches, I find some similarities & some differences.

Let’s look at similarities first. I had 3 reasons for joining Toastmasters back in 2003.

  1. To become an effective communicator and articulate my ideas clearly
  2. To meet like-minded people who want to improve themselves
  3. To enjoy the act of speaking in public, moving from fear to pleasure

Event today the same 3 reasons catalyzed me to restart my journey with this club. Same reasons; a new season.

Now let’s look at some differences in my life now compared to the year 2003.

  1. I was single back then, now I have a family; a lovey wife Anusha & a lively son Samyak aged 5 years
  2. In the year 2003, I lived in Bangalore, India and visited Bay area on work every year. Now I live in the Bay area and visit Bangalore twice every year
  3. I have lost around 35 pounds of body weight; I have also lost an incalculable amount of emotional weight. I look younger and feel lighter than I used to in the year 2003

From the year 2003 to 2011, I actively delivered speeches in Toastmasters and participated in speech contests. In the words of Jim Rohn, “I worked harder on myself than I did on my job”.

I completed Competent Communicator and Advanced Communicator Bronze manuals. When I took a hiatus in 2011, I was one speech short of completing Advanced Communicator Silver level. After 6 years of hibernation, I am now motivated to reconnect with my voice and shape my thoughts into words.

Today I am restarting my Toastmasters journey with a blank slate, starting from the icebreaker speech. My goal is to complete the competent communicator track by the end of this year.

I like community clubs because of the spirit, commitment & diversity. It’s rare to find these three elements in corporate clubs. That’s why I joined a community club this time. I have attended 2 club meetings here as a guest. The quality of speeches is outstanding.  I am joining HighSpirit Toastmasters club with a high spirit.

As I embark on this journey, I want to remember 3 key learnings from the last decade of my life and use them as a guiding light as I walk ahead.

  1. Perfection is the enemy of execution. Never wait for a perfect script to deliver the next speech.
  2. Progress is made by actions, not merely by intentions. Planning definitely helps, but action brings vision into fruition.
  3. The journey is more important than the destination. Enjoy every step in the path of progress. Don’t lose the moment in search of momentum.