Carpe Diem – regular meeting May 21st 2024

Dear Zuriberg Toastmasters,

Little did Horace know, when he coined “Carpe Diem,” that his words would inspire millions, including our vibrant meeting last Tuesday evening.

The theme “Carpe Diem,” or seize the day, set the stage for an empowering evening. Guided by our charming Toastmaster of the Evening (TME), Harry, we dove into a world of inspirational speeches, with “mindfulness” as the word of the day introduced by our Grammarian, Samira. Kevin’sthought-provoking table topics further challenged us to envision how we would seize opportunities in various scenarios.

Speakers’ Highlights

Gabriel ignited our spirits with his leadership journey. He shared how he adapted various leadership styles in his first managerial role. His speech was organized and impactful, crowned by a motivational quote from J. Maxwell, “Leadership is about a life influencing another,” earning him the Best Speaker award.

Ana-Maria masterfully explained how AI works through storytelling, comparing AI training to how pigeons are trained to identify images of brain cancer. She demystified AI, presenting it as a fascinating narrative with a clear take-away message: AI is a powerful tool, not a threat.

Alessandro delivered a powerful speech titled “Beyond Resilience: The Lessons of Stoicism.” He educated us with philosophical insights, providing practical lessons on leadership and resilience. His structured approach and compelling content fulfilled his project’s aim to write a speech with purpose.

Yesenia shared her leadership style, emphasizing self-discovery and embracing one’s true self. She introduced us to “Biodanza,” balancing her experience with motivational insights. Understanding your leadership style, she explained, is about mastering your emotions.

Vadim shared a heartfelt toast for his project on Evaluation and Feedback. He recounted his transformative journey within our club, from a guest observer to an actively engaged member. His story of overcoming anxiety with the help of a warm welcome and bold advice was truly inspiring. A small gesture might have such an influence on one’s personal journey. 

The Art of Evaluations

Evaluations are the cornerstone of our growth. Our dedicated evaluators—Fereshte, Richard, Thomas, Anna, and Roland—listened actively and provided insightful, constructive feedback. They celebrated our strengths and highlighted areas for improvement with empathy and motivation. Roland’s exceptional feedback earned him the Best Evaluator award. Key takeaways included the power of pauses in complex topics and using simpler language for clarity, and easier pronunciation.

Table Topics

Kevin’s table topics perfectly embodied the spirit of “Carpe Diem.” Questions like “What if you had all the money in the world?” and “Do you have a bucket list?” inspired members to share their dreams and stories. Many stepped up courageously, with yours truly, Vanessa winning the Best Table Topic award for a humorous tale of a bucket list wish gone wrong.


The evening concluded with our General Evaluator Joanna and her team—Samira, Zsolt, and Anton—offering valuable feedback. Their insights and our excellent time management, well-organized room and evaluations highlighting the speakers’ goals ensured a productive and inspiring session.

What’s Next?

As we move forward, let us harness the energy of “Carpe Diem” to elevate our Toastmasters journey. Step up, take on new roles, and deliver inspiring speeches. Each moment is an opportunity to grow, learn, and empower one another.

  • May 28th: Regular Meeting – “Paradox” led by TME Seline.
  • June 11th: Regular Meeting – “Luxury” led by TME Elias.
  • June 18th: Regular Meeting – “Resolute” (TME needed).
  • June 25th: Summer Party hosted by Michelle—RSVP essential for planning.

Embrace the spirit of “Carpe Diem” in every meeting.Take on roles, request speeches, and never let a moment pass without practicing and improving. 

Warmest regards,

Vanessa Stournari

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