Challenging yourself

What happens when you meet a goal? 

What happens when you have reached your Distinguished Toastmaster (DTM) not only once, but twice?

What happens when you have been the District Governor helping more than 160 Toastmasters clubs throughout Colorado, Wyoming, and western Nebraska?

For Alan Swartz, you find a new challenge or a new goal.  You go on to become the 2011 District Humorous Speech Champion.

Alan Swart, 2011 District 26 Humorous Speech winner;

See the full article by Kimberly Nicoletti on Alan’s journey through this process:

Here is the Foothills Division Contest presentation of Alpha Male Undressed video courtesy of Patricia Moore

I’ve had the pleasure of knowing Alan for almost two years now.  I had heard rumors of his “Let Me Be Me” speech when he was roasted as the outgoing District Governor.

Seeing Alan go through the contest process, it reminds me of several things:

  • It reminds me that we can’t sit on our past accomplishments, but we must continue to challenge ourselves so that we can grow.
  • It reminds me that great things come to those who put forth the effort.
  • It reminds me that Alan did a very moving speech in the form of a eulogy to himself.  In this eulogy, he asked if people would remember him because of his accomplishments, his collections of pens, etc.  He then took an alternative stance with examples from people whom he made a difference by being there in their lives.  He asked what we wanted to be remembered for.

For me, Alan has been a wonderful mentor.  He has encouraged many of us to take the leap and challenge ourselves in new ways.  In many organizations, mistakes are not an option.  In our group, mistakes are a part of the process and we know that Alan is there to help.  He leads through support and through example.

Let me ask you:

  • How are you challenging yourself?


  • How has Alan made a difference in your life?

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