Presentation Tips – The power of personal stories

Life is a series of challenges. We write tests or exams and unfortunately we are not always on the same page as the person next to us. Hence we can’t compare. This does not mean I cannot share my story. If I share my story perhaps it can help you to pass the exam or test when the time comes.

This is the one of reasons why I share my personal stories, the other is that, a problem shared is a problem half solved.  By talking about it I find a way of dealing with it quicker. Speeches that include personal stories have a therapeutic way of dealing with problems and stressful issues. By allowing yourself to be vulnerable, you will find connection to your audience is much easier.

Contest season is upon us. Last year I had the privilege of contesting and became a finalist at District level. I owe this to my personal story which connected me to my audience.

After my speech presentation there were many people that approached me. Zanily Hatton said” I don’t win trophies; I win hearts’ that was before the results were out. During dinner someone came and sat with me and she poured her heart out. People are going through a lot and some die in silence. That speech made them realise they are not alone. There is more where that speech came from. I have a valley of speeches waiting to be shared with the world.

I will not be doing justice to the people who recognised the talent and believed in me before I even knew or realized I had the gift. These are my lifetime mentors who are Toastmasters in my own club. To mention but few Colleen Love, Marlene van Wyk and Glenis Whitehead. Sometimes we have to rely on someone else’s belief until our belief kicks in.

The purpose of life is to serve, and if I can tell you my story and make you feel lighter or feel your problems are bearable and manageable then my job is done for the day. My name is Mimi I want to inspire before I expire.

If I tell my story and you gain one of the above-mentioned attributes then my job is done.  I know what people will say about me when I can no longer speak.

Mimi Makupula

Algoa and ACT Toastmasters Clubs