At our last club meeting on Tuesday 1st November 2016 Avigail Sacks has delivered her Competent Communication level 4 speech ( CC4 – How to Say It).
The objective of the speech was, firstly, to select the right words and sentence structure to communicate ideas clearly, accurately and vividly. Secondly, to use rhetorical devices (figures of speech) to enhance and emphasize ideas. And thirdly, to eliminate jargon and use correct grammar.
Avigail gave us permission to post her speech on our website.
Life is like a Symphony
The composer lifts his arm high, the audience is silent and the orchestra waits patiently. He brings his hand back almost to touch his heart. As soon as both hands come out a gentle tune begins to play so gracefully and so pure, I close my eyes. As I open my eyes and see the orchestra again, every musician is in synch with the other. They have a limited time to impress the audience and in that time they are creating something magical.
Mr Toastmaster Ladies and Gentlemen
My mind drifts off to when I was a little girl sitting in my piano lesson. I attempt to copy the scale my teacher has just played. It’s not that she managed to play eight notes one after the other that intimidated me. The challenge was to play each note with the exact same timing between each note.
It was the ability to sit straight as if my spine was hit by a bolt of lightning. But it was also the skill to keep my hand elegantly rounded on the keys as if I was holding an apple. Those eight keys craved discipline and courage, elegance and grace. And when they were played in perfect timing, it was a masterpiece.
Music taught me skills that I realised not everyone had. When I watch X Factor with my husband and someone is singing, he always asks me, “So, are they any good? “Did they hold the note?” I also learnt that my music could soothe people. When I was ten years old, I would play a soft tune for my baby sister and she would fall asleep or I would play for two different disabled girls who couldn’t speak or walk, both of whom are no longer alive.
As I grew older I realised something I would call magnificent. I realised that each musician is bound to the timing of the music, and contrary to the belief of many people, something that was bound by time could actually produce something beautiful. How many of us have either heard or believe in phrases like, “why do tomorrow’s work today? Do not become a slave to time.” A lot of people dread the constraints of time and their watch feels like a handcuff on their wrist.
In my discovery of the concept of time, I realised one thing to be indisputable.
Every song has a beginning and an end. Every person’s day has a beginning and an end. And our lives have a beginning and an end. The song does not carry on forever. What each musician decides to do from the beginning of the song until the end is up to them. They might decide to play with passion and focus or they might take this as a joke and fool around or not play at all.
Time is not the villain that many depict it to be. Imagine if we could finish our degrees within however many years we wished, how many of us would actually finish? Or imagine I said to my child he could watch on the iPad for as long as he wished, would he ever stop and would it be good for him?
Music made me realise that if I do not do what I have to do in a specific moment in my life, not only is that moment gone, but I have let down myself and perhaps the whole orchestra. How is our timing? Are we playing the right keys at the right time? Are we playing the wrong keys and the wrong time? Not only are we responsible for our own lives, we are part of a bigger picture, the picture the orchestra is attempting to play.
Do you know what’s worse than being an ordinary man? Being a musician who doesn’t play. We are all musicians in the symphony of our lives. We were all born with talent, with intrinsic goodness and purpose. There is nothing worse than hearing silence when a musician is meant to play.
Yes we all have challenges and we fall along the way. It takes time to find what makes us unique. No one became great by sitting comfortably in the first row of the concert. Use those challenging times to show your commitment to yourself and those around you. Be versatile, step out of that predictive box that others might have placed you in. How many of us walk around with that voice in our head saying, “You missed it! You failed!”
But our life is not over until it is over and until that time we have enough time to fight, to stand out and to be good at it!
This confusing and intricate world is not waiting for cowards! It is waiting for you, you know why? Because there is no duplicate of you. You are the only you. And only you can do what you are meant to do in this world.
Being bound by time is inevitable and producing something positive in that time is definitely possible. I could not have asked to be taught a greater lesson in my youth. There is nothing more rewarding than being able to recognise the moments in your life when it is your time to shine and giving it your all. Yes, it can be hard and intimidating, but it’s a moment of growth and possibility. Sometimes we can hear that tick, tick, tick in our ears or have that light blinding our eyes, but just know that it is possible to discover ourselves and create a beautiful life in a world that is bound by time, just like the orchestra does.
Without self- belief we cannot achieve anything and without awe for the world in which we live in, we live a life of missed opportunity.
For those who embrace time rather than dread it, life is like a symphony.
What a beautiful speech. Thank you, Avigail.