One of the rotating features of many clubs is a theme for the meeting.
A few years ago, our Toastmasters club evolved from periodically featuring a meeting theme to making this a regular part of the weekly agenda. It should be noted it serves as a backdrop influencing some components, such as the Toast or Table Topics, but core roles such as formal speaking or evaluating follow their own course and may or may not intersect with the theme.
While we typically are topical for holidays and other annual celebrations, there are numerous opportunities to explore other subjects or concepts.
For example, we have held meetings this year with themes such as forgiveness, continuing education, strange music, independence, the great outdoors, ancestors, people skills, world heritage, pets, and maple syrup. The fact that seemingly every day of the year has one or more localized or international recognitions for large scale or niche celebration means ideas for topics of the day are multitudinous.
Advantages to including meeting themes include providing a subject to build on for those with roles requiring preparation, plus the capacity to engage and encourage symbiotic fun with those attending. This also helps address the idea of freshening the ongoing challenge of personal development and creativity.
Some topics are easier to work with than others. They may be selected, by those deciding, based on personal likes not endeared by all. A recent TM meeting of ours with the theme of ‘Talk Like a Pirate’ comes to mind. Obviously, the more universal the appeal of a selected theme, the more participants can easily relate.
But, in this age of increasingly niche oriented interests, suppose this concept becomes ratcheted to a wider, esoteric pool.
Such as examples for ‘Name Your Own Day (NYOD)’ – versions of which are probably being celebrated sometime, somewhere…
- ‘No One Can Criticize Me on Social Media’ day
- ‘Yes, I Do Own the Road’ day
- ‘I Want an Orange Juice Maker on My Desk’ day
- ‘If I Cry Over Spilt Milk, It’s O.K.’ day
- ‘My Words Are Like Gold’ day
- ‘All Hands on Deck for Me’ day
- ‘I Won’t Wait for the Ink to Dry’ day
- ‘Give Me the $64,000 Question’ day
- ‘It’s My Way or the Highway’ day
- ‘Laughing Last’ day
- ‘I’m Off and Running’ day
- ‘Let’s See Which Way the Wind Blows’ day
What this all implies is that any day really can be our day, but subject to conditions.