Wow! How quickly a year has come to past! I am honestly thankful for this last opportunity to address all of you as your President. But, I'm equally thankful for the opportunity to pass on the gavel to your next President on June 27.
The last year has been an immense journey for me. Admittedly, all my strengths bode well for me but all my weaknesses were brutally, brutally exposed. If there ever was the need for an accelerated course on growing up, I strongly recommend running for President of D'Utama Advanced Toastmasters Club.
But seriously, in happiness and occasional unhappiness, I was struck by wonderment that I have not had in a long time. I tried to share with you lessons but found myself teaching me a thing or two. And for that, I have to thank you.
In the last year, I talked about self-actualization using Po, the Kung Fu Panda as an example; I talked about auto-suggestion, using Bonnie in my demonstration; I explored the power of knowledge and ability; I expounded on our innate gifts and I spent a lot of time on love. Love for yourself, love for your neighbour.
All those themes contribute to the grander scheme of things - my theme for the year - Be The Change - which culminated with my own journey of how I embraced the theme and how I benefitted from it substantially.
But I never once talked about what being the change means. Allow me the honour to do that today.
Be The Change, in a nutshell:
- Take positive steps to work towards achieving what you always wanted to achieve. Be the "Po" - realize your dream(s). The learning is in the "secret" of believing in yourself.
- Reinforce that dream - by using the power of auto-suggestion, as our mind is extremely powerful.
- Equip yourself - with knowledge & skill for with knowledge comes power; and with power comes achievement.
- Believe in yourself. We come back full circle to you. And the only way to achieve this is by loving yourself. Imperfections and all. Because, until you learn to love and accept yourself as you are, nothing can come to fruition.
I take leave by reiterating the cliche, the only thing constant in the world is change. As we prepare for another exciting year under the new Executive Committee, let us welcome the new change and changes that will come our way. Let us put behind being reactive and start being proactive. Not only in Toastmasters, but also in our work and in our personal lives. Fellow Toastmasters, my final wish for you: Be The Change or be changed.
Deborah Hoe, CTM
President 2008 / 2009