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Why Speak? Service!

Understanding Service Rewards

Fifty hours community service done - freedom!

Hopefully your reasons for speaking are a bit more authentic. While a presentation assigned by the boss may not be as motivating as other noncompulsory reasons, there's one 'real' reward you can get from any speech: service.

To illustrate:

Victor Frankl lived in Vienna during the 1940's. By all accounts, he lived a successful life: great wife, good family, successful medical practice. Frankl, a psychologist, helped people overcome depression and prevent suicide. By all accounts, life was good. Except that he lived in Vienna during the 1940's, and was a Jew.

In Autumn of 1942 Nazis captured his family and deported them to concentration camps. His parents and wife died, while Frankl remained in Auschwitz. There, he witnessed and endured the greatest atrocities ever committed against mankind, by mankind. To maintain his sanity and well-being, he attempted to view the concentration camps through the objective perspective of a psychologist. There, he came to know "man as he really is."

"Our generation is realistic, for we have come to know man as he really is. After all, man is that being who invented the gas chambers of Auschwitz; however, he is also that being who entered those gas chambers upright, with the Lord's Prayer or the Shema Yisrael on his lips."

Frankl emerged, and penned the seminal work Man's Search for Meaning. Said he of the meaning of life,

"Success, like happiness, cannot be pursued; it must ensue... as the unintended side-effect of one's personal dedication to a course greater than oneself.

Which is where the service comes in. You may be giving a small-group technical presentation or a $10,000 motivational speech, but no matter which one you give, it is worthless if it doesn't mean anything outside of yourself.

Speeches are powerful for that very reason. Words convey ideas, emotions, meaning to other people. They are symbols of meaning that we give to others, the highest form of service in existence. Words change lives, from the start to finish of any speech.

Said Frankl, "I grasped the meaning of the greatest secret that human poetry and human thought and belief have to impart: The salvation of man is through love and in love." Service.

Let's give our speech.

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