Creating Your Bucket List:
It's Time to Set Goals In and Beyond Toastmasters
The Bucket List: A list of aspirations one wishes to achieve in one's lifetime, before he or she "kicks the bucket" and passes away.
The Toastmasters Bucket List: A list of personal or professional goals within Toastmasters or resulting from involvement with Toastmasters clubs, contests, curricula, to be pursued in one's lifetime.
Why wait until you're old or ill to pursue those goals you most yearn to achieve? In 2011 it's time to be bold and make your list, announce your intentions to others and let the universe work with you to achieve your goals. Your Toastmasters club and worldwide network are poised to assist you in pursuit of goals on your Bucket List, whether within or beyond the Toastmasters environment.
Your Toastmasters Bucket List
In addition to earning your CC and AC, CL and AL, and your DTM, you can set other goals for yourself as a Toastmaster. And why not? Quoting Past International President Helen Blanchard, "if you get out of Toastmasters all there is to get out of Toastmasters, you'll never get out of Toastmasters!" My question: what else do you want to achieve in Toastmasters? Put another way, what else, in this lifetime, would you like to achieve as a Toastmaster?
You: Like to speak and you like to travel.
You: like to speak and you love to compete.
You: like to write as well as speak. And you have ideas to help other Toastmasters.
You: want to help others turn their life around and give hope to those in need.
You: Have love leadership and are acquiring leadership experience in Toastmasters, business and/or government.
The tools you’ve developed in Toastmasters will help you achieve your Bucket List goals.
Your Bucket List — Inspired by Toastmasters
Your Bucket List may be filled with goals and dreams inspired by Toastmasters, or else made possible by the skills and confidence, experiences and relationships forged through your Toastmasters experience. Many famous people — politicians, actors and business tycoons — have used Toastmasters to propel them to greatness. You can too.
You: Want to use your leadership, speaking and service skills to bring the gift of communication and leadership to other groups to extend their spheres of influence.
You: Want to use your charisma, communication and leadership skills to reach millions.
You: Have an amazing story to tell.
You: Love languages, other cultures and are a citizen of the world.
You: Love leadership, communication and politics.
The key is that you go for your goal, and that it be meaningful, powerful and transformational!
"If you have a dream, go for it." So says Marshall Goldsmith PhD, New York Times best-selling author, management guru and executive coach. "If you don’t try to achieve your dreams when you are 25, you probably won’t when you are 45, 65 or 85. None of us will achieve all of our dreams."
Goldsmith, the author of Mojo, and What Got You Here Won't Get You There, helps top CEOs make lasting changes to increase their effectiveness. His advise rings true for us all: "The key question is not, “Did I achieve all of my dreams?” The key question is, “Did I at least try?” Old people almost never regretted the risks they took that failed. They almost always regretted the risks that they failed to take."
2011 is the time to pursue your Bucket List goals!
Progress on Congress
Consider 53-year old Buddy Burke, CL of Sunrise Toastmasters (362-57) in Walnut Creek California, who ran for Congress in California's 10th district in 2010. "It was something I always wanted to do. The only question was when." The catalyst: Toastmasters! "I felt five steps ahead due to my Toastmasters experience" said Burke, who entered the race with just two months to go. "I hit the ground running, using my communication and leadership skills gleaned in Toastmasters. Table Topics really helped me with the Question and Answer sessions in my campaigning." Buddy's second club, Tales and Tellers in Danville CA, helps him hone his storytelling skills to connect with voters on a heart level. Though he lost in the primary, he identified thirty-two lessons he learned from the experience, and plans to run again.
A TEDucational Presentation
For Chamber ChattersToastmaster (2332-57) Andrea Spence, AL-Bronze, in Pleasanton California, proprietor of Mental Leverage™, Toastmasters is a staging area for ultimately giving a future talk to the world's movers and shakers at the TED Conference. (www.tedtalks.com). TED is where technology, entertainment and design converge. At TED Conferences big ideas meet BHAGs — big hairy audacious goals. The results literally change our world. And it's the place Spence wants to be, to teach people the enormous power of their minds, and how they can use it to their advantage to overcome stress, fear and anxiety and reach their true potential.
Examples run the Gamut
Among the goals found on my Bucket List:
Your Bucket List: Ready, Set Goal!
Ideas put to paper take on a power of their own. Whether you pray about your list, meditate on it, or create a brainstorming session with others to formulate it, ask yourself the following questions before you construct your Bucket List:
Your list can be a blend of people to meet, interview or work for, places to visit, live or relocate to, companies to work for, do business with or emulate when starting your own enterprise. Are there significant events you want to attend? Would you like to run with the bulls in Pamplona Spain? Or create your own Reality TV show? Play Carnegie Hall? Experience the Summer Solstice at Stonehenge in England? Meet Brazilian futbol star Pélé? experience Ramadan in Mecca? Or the Cherry Blossom Festivals in Japan in April? Or Orbit earth's atmosphere? Visit the North or South Pole? Circumnavigate the earth via airplane, sailboat or dirigible?
Your List Should Be Perpetually Under Construction!
NY Times Best-Selling author and speaker Harvey Mackay told me his best friend, Hall of Fame Football Coach Lou Holtz once made a list of 108 goals he had for his life. Among his goals: Win a National Championship in college football, Meet the Pope, and parachute out of an airplane. Each time he achieved one of his goals he checked it off his list…and replaced it a new goal!
Make Your List and Check It Weekly
So what are you waiting for? Construct your list today! Ask yourself "What do I want to achieve in my lifetime?" Be bold. Items on your list should be really big and a real stretch.
Here are some tips for achieving your Bucket List goals.
"When thinking about a goal, ask yourself, "How do I want this story to end?" Then choose to live in the story that will have this happy ending." So advises Dr. Marcia Reynolds, author of Wander Woman: How High-Achieving Women Find Contentment and Direction. Reynolds, a Certified Speaking Professional, reminds us all that we have little to lose by pursuing our bucket list goals. "Most of the time people react to a fear that is unclear. Once they articulate the possible consequences, they see that the risk is not that big. In fact, the possible gain of freedom, pride and joy is much greater than the possibility of loss."
Lastly, add me to your support team so I too can support your most noble endeavor!
SIDEBAR: Creating a Mind Map to Pursue A Goal
For Toastmaster Dale Harmon of San Leandro California's Shelf-Talkers club (1809-57), becoming a World Champion of Public Speaking was a daunting challenge. While he competed in club and area, division and district contests, he knew it would take take more to become a Toastmasters' World Champion. Using a mind map, Dale brainstormed all the different things he could do to improve his speechmaking, body language, humor, movements, mindset and more. Stay tuned for more from Dale in the coming years!
SIDEBAR: How to Work Your List
For every goal, answer the following questions to help you formalize a plan to achieve it:
Download your generic Mind Map, Action Plan and Resource Forms (PDF) for success here.