Back in May I wrote in my post, Stepping Out of My Comfort Zone in May about my invitation to be an MC and Guest Speaker at the Co.As.It. Mother’s Day High Tea Event.
Early in 2018, I received an email from the Gold Coast office of the Co.As.It. Community organization, explaining that they were organizing an event for Mother’s Day and inviting me to be the MC and one of the Guest Speakers. The idea was to promote their services which provide assistance with in-home aged care and community support, with an opportunity for women to enjoy time together and a delicious High Tea and Fashion parade.
When I first read the email, I was quite surprised as I hadn’t promoted myself for this type of work, however, the organizers had read my blog and Facebook page and thought I would be ‘perfect’ for the role (their words not mine). I wasn’t quite as enthusiastic about my abilities but with my usual determination, I wasn’t going to let self-doubt stop me. This is where stepping out of my comfort zone came into play.
After discussions with Rita and Martina, from Co.As.It, I had a general idea of what I wanted to talk about. I decided my topic would be one that would hopefully inspire the attendees to take a new look at how they viewed aging. My speech would be sharing my 5 ways to live with an Ageless Attitude. Once I started writing it all came together and in fact, I had to shorten the speech!
6 life learnings from my first gig as an MC and Guest Speaker
1. Preparation and Practice
Preparation for any challenge or goal is the key to overcoming anxiety and nervousness. I needed to feel comfortable with the delivery and also I didn’t want to just ‘read’ the speech but rather just refer to the notes. This meant practice, practice, practice! I had to overcome my self-consciousness if I was going to present well. I took the leap to start making videos for my weekly newsletter to get used to hearing my voice and to practice speaking. I also made a practice video of my speech and then presented to my husband (that made me nervous!).
2. Nervousness can be positive energy
The day arrived and although I had prepared well, I was still feeling some ‘butterflies’. I’ve read that even accomplished speakers can still feel nervous or anxious before a speech. The key for them is to use this feeling in a positive way. Being nervous can actually enhance your presentation, because you don’t become complacent. You can use a negative feeling to achieve a positive result. It really is the way you view things.
3. Passion brings Confidence
If you are a regular reader of ST60&Beyond, you will know that I am a great advocate for living the best life that we can and not becoming obsessed with our age. I found that my passion about this subject brought confidence to me as I truly believed my message and wanted to motivate and inspire others to feel this passion too.
4. We can always do with Support
My daughter, Rachel, accompanied me for support and we were able enjoy a Mother’s Day High Tea together. It was a lovely afternoon and I appreciated having her there with me, as my #1 Cheerleader. I had also shared my speech with some friends who gave me their constructive feedback as well as the support of my husband who was my ‘audience’ several times.
5. Finding Inspiration in Others
Rachel and I sat with an inspiring lady who was the other guest speaker. Daphne Pirie is 86 and has an accomplished career in sport and working to promote Women’s Sport in Queensland. After battling cancer and breaking her pelvis, Daphne recovered, with the help of the Co.As.It. physio team and was able to jog (not walk) in the Queen’s Baton Relay for the Commonwealth Games, held recently on the Gold Coast. Her speech was entertaining with stories of her life and also her involvement with The Games. Rachel, was very inspired by her, as was I.
6. Belief in Myself
The most important learning from the experience was that I actually did feel that I presented well. The ‘Sue of the past’, would have never admitted this and would have been very critical of her ‘performance’. I believed in my ability and actually enjoyed the whole experience. I learned I could cope with anything. For example, I wasn’t given any notes for the Fashion Parade until the models were about to walk down the Catwalk but I was able to go with the flow and it didn’t fluster me.
I have discovered that I enjoy Motivational Speaking and who knows perhaps I might even be offered another opportunity in the future. If you are looking for an MC or Guest Speaker – I’d love to hear from you!
I was pleasantly surprised when I received feedback from several people suggesting that I must have a number of years of experience in speaking as I was so professional. Yes, that was certainly good for the ego. I also received the following feedback and testimonial from Co.As.It. Community Services South Coast:
“Sue Loncaric was a fantastic MC during our Mother’s Day event. Although not what she does on a daily basis, Sue performed incredibly well in her role throughout the entire event. We loved working with Sue since the day we met her a few months ago. Always available and only one email away,
Sue has an amazing approach to things: relaxed and efficient at the same time. Sue didn’t hesitate to share her personal experiences with a beautiful speech about her life achievements and goals that had the power to inspire many of our guests.
We can truly recommend Sue both as motivational guest speaker as well as a great MC.
Co.As.It. Community Services South Coast “
I’d like to share some photos of the day with you…and if you are interested you can read my speech HERE