I posted a list of values in the articles section today. This list will be referenced by a future article on how to discover your values and live congruently with them, but I thought I’d go ahead and post the list now instead of waiting until the complete article is ready.
In a couple hours I’ll be attending a workshop on Toastmaster’s Accredited Speaker Program. Although Toastmasters has over 200,000 members and over 10,000 individual clubs worldwide, only 56 speakers in the world have qualified as accredited speakers. And of those 56, two happen to live in Las Vegas, and both of them belong to the club which is hosting tonight’s workshop. This particular club, called Powerhouse Pros, is a unique Toastmasters club with a special purpose. They’re essentially a mastermind group of about 20 people who are committed to becoming professional speakers. I know at least two members of this club already, and from what I’ve heard, it sounds like it would be an excellent fit for me. I need to give four more speeches before I’ll be qualified to join, but I’ve already been invited to attend meetings as a guest in the meantime.
Now I’m not even remotely qualified yet to apply for the Accredited Speaker Program, and accreditation isn’t one of my current goals anyway. But I’m going to this workshop because I’ll undoubtedly learn something and meet many people whose goals run parallel to my own, including some who are already speaking professionally. Since “growth” is my highest personal value, signing up to attend was a no-brainer for me. While earning the badge of accreditation isn’t important to me right now, I’m excited to to learn more about how to develop the skills needed to qualify for this distinction and especially to meet other people who share my passion for public speaking. I always find it easier to accomplish big goals when I surround myself with people who are on a similar path. As Dr. Wayne Dyer says, “See yourself as being surrounded by the conditions you want to create in your life.”
Personally I don’t buy into the competitive mindset that says you must claw your way to your goals on the backs of other people. While that may be the environment created by some corporate cultures (and even venerated by the TV show The Apprentice), I reject that paradigm for the more cooperative approach of finding other people with similar goals and encouraging the heck out of each other. I think it’s a lot more fulfilling to pursue a goal together with a group of allies than to treat everyone as a competitor. Plus it’s nice to achieve a goal and have people cheering you on because they’ve contributed to your success instead of booing you because your success means their failure. And it’s even more wonderful to see others succeed whom you’ve helped in some way.