Are you nervous saying yes? Do you wonder, what have I gotten myself into? Do you think that maybe your misgivings are trying to warn you against what you just agreed to? If so, have no fear. This is normal. When you step out of your comfort zone it is normal to feel nervous – or uncomfortable. That is the point, right? We’re all right there with you. Everybody has had their first time at everything.

I’ve been giving speeches in Toastmasters for eight years -loads of speeches. And people will often ask me, “do the nerves go away?’ “Not really” I say, “you just get used to it”. The strength of the nervousness goes down greatly as you do it more, but there is always a little bit of it right before you present. And it is a good thing, because it shows you care about what you are going to say – you want to do it right.

And when you say yes to an opportunity, a new position of any kind, you will get surprises. You will have those times that you say “what did I get myself into?” You can do the best preparation and still not anticipate what may come up. I was in the middle of my first year as a Division Director in Toastmasters when covid hit. We were in the midst of speech contest season and all of a sudden we had to make a big switch. Not only did we have to help clubs go online, but we had to take our contest online and learn Zoom very quickly. I think we did a great job adapting but it was definitely not something I could have anticipating when I began my term of office.

Balance out the nervousness when you say yes with a vision of that old ketchup commercial with Carly Simon’s voice in the background belting out “Anticipation”. Dream of the good things that may come your way because you said yes. The people you will meet, the pleasure moments you will enjoy, the unexpected rewards – including future opportunities- that may come your way as a result of that simple “yes”.

So don’t be nervous saying “yes”.

Tomorrow let’s talk about saying “yes,but” versus “yes, and”