TM Henry from London admits that digital is turning devil and there is no escape. Rather than running away from the reality, Henry has framed a TMOD theme around the subject to seek solutions from his Toastmasters friends. Do you agree with him? Let us know. Read his submission below.
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The Digital Devil
This meeting is happening over zoom. Early this morning, I got my news update from an app, communicated with my work team and family members over another app, received news about friend’s engagement through a social media app and even fixed my breakfast with an app. It doesn’t end here. Mobile phones and laptop have literally replaced our watch, trips to the bank, mart, and even park. Coz who needs to travel all the way to the park when you can watch a Youtube video and exercise at home. Never mind the temptation to switch to a funny video halfway through the routine and skipping real conversations with actual people all together.
Fellow Toastmasters, I am not the first person to remind you that our lives literally revolve around our digital gadgets these days and I certainly won’t be the last one. Digital is indeed turning devil. However, I may be the first one to admit that my efforts to get rid of or reduce infiltration of devices in my life failed miserably. There was a time when I said to myself “I would avoid social media” and started calling up my friends and family to meet for real. Too often, they were either busy or did not follow my idea of avoiding social media. I also tried actually visiting a local store to buy stuff but my addiction to choices and low prices made me take a U turn in a couple of days. To say that I failed miserably would actually be a lie, I failed epically.
So before it gets any depressing, let’s change the subject and talk about Toastmasters for a while. Let me explain you how a Toastmasters meeting functions. Every Toastmasters meeting is divided into three parts. The first part is the prepared speech section where members prepare a speech in advance, get it mentored and deliver the same. The second part is the impromptu session where anyone including the guest can participate. And the third part is the most important evaluation session where we will all learn how to improve ourself. Let me now invite the General Evaluator to explain his role. Please help me welcome TM Name with a big round of applause.
Once the General Evaluator has explained his role, start the prepared speech section. After this session, continue with the theme as under.
Let’s admit. In current times, it’s impossible to fully distance ourselves from devices. The truth is the world is now operating in such a fashion that every service or product we need has a digital angle. Either you buy it digitally, receive it digitally or pay for it digitally. Take your cab ride as an example. You may receive the service physically coz teleportation is not a reality now but in all likelihood you call it digitally and pay digitally as well. Or imagine a trip to the amusement park – you may receive and pay physically but most likely, you receive information beforehand about the schedule, ticket prices etc online. Hell even in Toastmasters, when we met physically, everything from role volunteering to project details to even mentoring happened digitally. As I said, the world is currently designed in such a fashion that absolute distancing from devices is not an option.
We will get back to the theme shortly but first let us invite the Table Topic Master to host the most fun session of the day – the Table Topic Session.
Once the Table Topic Session is over, continue with the theme as under.
So what do we do now Toastmasters? I think we should start with baby steps, doing the bare minimum we can to reduce our interaction with devices like visiting the bank sometimes. I would like to ask your suggestions here. What do you think can be good for starters? (Audience interaction here)
Those were some fabulous ideas we came up with in such a short time. Thank you for your participation. Let me now invite the General Evaluator to present his report on the meeting today.
Once the evaluation session is over, conclude the theme as under.
Fellow toastmasters, I am sure you would all agree that devices are increasingly becoming a vital aspect of our lives. We identified some small steps we can take in our lives to achieve little freedom from their clutches. The next important step is making sure we implement them. As I said, let’s start small. Choose 3 small things from the ideas we came up with that you can implement starting today and let’s see where we go. I think that’s a great thing to do for starters.
It’s time now for awards.
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Thank you so much TM Henry for this submission.
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