A few months ago, when my friend Cleo was helping me prepare for a speech, she said, “How cool would it be if we had our own business? We are both minorities and together I bet you we could create a public speaking business with the leadership skills and communication skills we have both learned through Toastmasters. Plus, we would get to travel together and explore the world.” I said that would be cool because it would be doing something we love to do and it would give us opportunities to travel places we might not ever get a chance to go to otherwise. But at that time it was just a thought. Ralph, one of my other mentors, gave us ideas about what our company could be called but nothing struck a cord between either of us.
We began speaking to other clubs and I even spoke at the Rotary club. And then one day, my brother asked me if he could come with his independent living class to my apartment and ask questions about how I live on my own. It was then that I realized that the message that I gave to his class was don’t limit yourself. Even though I didn’t use those exact words. I continued speaking and then one day this past month it hit me. Even though there are many different messages woven throughout these blog posts my main message is don’t limit yourself. The thing that really encouraged me to get this off the ground was a goal list my friend Tim Wambach gave to me and I knew that if I wrote it down I would feel defeated if I didn't accomplish at least part of it. It was then that I asked Cleo if we could have a meeting with him to discuss the direction of this new business because we both knew that we wanted to get it off the ground in someway even if it was just talking about it out loud. Weeks before this meeting was when it hit me, No Limits would be a perfect name for our new company. Our main target audience is college students but as the title says we are not just limiting ourselves to college students. Even though we will have different types of speeches ranging from disability related topics to adjusting to the US after being in the Philippines, our message will be the same.
At the end of the month, we are celebrating our achievements through Toastmasters and celebrating with our friends as well in their achievements. Toastmasters has really become a bonding experience for me. I have developed friendships that go beyond just the meetings even into Saturday nights. Just by coincidence, this month will mark Cleo and my anniversary for when we first met. It’s amazing that it has just been a year, because I feel like we have known each other for a lifetime. I guess that is what happens when you find the right friendships. They just click. And Cleo and my relationship is a perfect example of this. I hope people will begin to develop a bond to help each other in the tragedy of Boston but not just for the tragic times, for all the years to come. Similar to the ones I have developed through Toastmasters. What really bothers me is that the United States comes together in tragedy but in often times doesn't help each other out on a typical day. And that my friends, is not being a true American. That is putting limits on yourself. The business still isn't that much off the ground but we want to speak at least once together by August. I’m reading inspirational books to get ideas from others and thinking about my childhood to create even more powerful speeches that will benefit and make a big impact on our audiences as well as writing ideas down that I have in a notebook because we have to start somewhere. If you can think of a group that would be benefited by our message of No Limits and following your dreams, please let us know. Remember my message for the rest of this month and always don’t put limits on yourself because that will just upset you and stop you from following your dreams.