Welcome to Public Speaking!
How to Begin
While this is primarily a handbook for members of Toastmasters, the principles here will help you become better at speaking no matter which platform you choose.
If you're not a Toastmaster, you may be looking for the following essays:
Toastmasters is a long-standing organization, and as with any organization that lasts long, it has its own culture, jargon, and insider information.
It can be confusing to have a ton of information thrown at you, and while there are several resources, guides, and training materials for all that you can accomplish in Toastmasters, I didn't find a consolidated effort.
More importantly, I didn't find one that resonated with me.
I've been in Toastmasters since 2016, and I've learned a lot in that time. I've also trained a whole lot of people in whatever I've learned. For your benefit, I've consolidated that experience here.
This is your handbook to getting everything you want out of Toastmasters. It's a culmination of all that I have learned, and everything I continue learning. I hope you use this to go from beginner to badass in your own way.
Beyoncé has famously reclaimed the word "diva" to mean someone who is a hustler.
70% because DIVA is a play on DIVision A, my jurisdiction in 2019-2020 as District 92's Division A Director.
But also 30% because Divas are fierce, confident, and self-assured, 3 traits that we could use a lot more of. I hope you find your authentic, confident, and badass self in Toastmasters, and if this handbook helps even a little, it has done its job.
I've removed a number of articles that were incomplete or not good enough. Anything you can see in the navigation is good enough to use. Articles with asterisks (*) are coming in the next update.
Eventually, this page will have a function-based table of contents. The content is divided into sections according to which entity benefits along with you.
- THE SELF is purely for you and your understanding of fundamentals.
- THE CLUB is your first foray into leadership, learning how to manage your club.
- THE COMMUNITY is for when you're ready to step out of your club and start getting involved with higher leadership.
- THE CONTESTS are for when you're ready to compete against the best, and try to make a name for yourself as an expert speaker.
You can get into these in any order you like. This categorization is simply my recommendation.