Showing posts from October, 2012

Jay Kiew, DTM

We want to give special recognition to one of our company reps Jay Kiew from the University of British Columbia.  Jay has been a member in Toastmasters since his first year at UBC and has just completed his 5th full year. He recently achieved the respected honor of not only receiving the incredibly prestigious DTM Award, but also became the youngest Distinguished Toastmaster in the world at the age of 22. From the Toastmasters International Wikipedia page : Distinguished Toastmaster Toastmasters awards its highest honor,  Distinguished Toastmaster  (DTM), to members who have achieved both the Advanced Communication Gold and Advanced Leader Silver awards. To achieve the DTM typically takes five to eight years of dedicated service and leadership in at the local club, area, and division levels. DTM candidates must also perform more than 40 public presentations both inside the club and out in the community (as part of earning the prerequisite Competent Communicator and Advanced

Avoiding Emotional Black Holes

When I was studying astronomy in college, I found myself very intrigued (and still do) by the subject of black holes -- massive stars that have experienced a supernova an imploded upon themselves. What remains is a gravitational force so powerful that not even light is able to escape it. I'm sure that at some point you've been around a griping, whiny person who has devolved into an emotional black hole. Their negativity is so overt that they not only affect themselves but seem to sap your energy and attitude as well. Some people brighten rooms upon entering while this type of person brightens the room by leaving it.  In a blog I read by Geoffrey James, he offers some suggestions on how to improve your own attitude and increase your ability to influence others in a positive and helpful way. Here are some of his suggestions: Stop using negative phrases such as "It's impossible," or "This won't work," because they program your mind for more

Don't Play The Blame Game

back when i was a kid, my mother was filming my brother and i (about 3 & 4 years old at the time) as we decorated our christmas tree with ornaments. looking back, there's a shot of my brother on a step-ladder, reaching up as high as a four year old could, to place an ornament near the top of the mid-sized tree. he loses his balance for a moment, dropping the glass ornament as he catches himself from falling. CRASH! the ornament hits the floor and shatters.  this is all captured on video. however, as soon as the ornament breaks, my brother turns to the camera and screams, "lexi did it!!" the video pans to me in my footie holiday pajamas, minding my own business as i stood there watching -- not being very productive, but definitely not dropping ornaments on the floor. for my 4 year old brother, his diversion of blame was pretty clever, even cute. but to divert blame as a mature individual -- nope, not so cute anymore. a waste of energy is more like it.  you, an