Is the glass half empty or half full?

156 glass half empty or half fullText of my speech at Florida State University. Valencia, Tuesday 15th of April
Author’s note: I’m a Non Native English Speaker, please be patient if you find a grammatical mistake. Feel free to send me an inbox correcting my mistakes

Fellow Toastmasters and guests, my project of today is called speaking after dinner. Usually, when we have something to celebrate we make a toast. In Spain we always find an excuse to toast.

We could toast, for example, for Peter, who is going to complete today the Competent Communicator Manual, at last! I’ve been waiting for this moment since his last speech, 328 days ago. It has been a long wait Peter, a long wait.

The truth is that all this time Peter has been running other roles and working on the club’s growth. Thank you for that Peter.

When I saw our fellow Pablo drinking a Guinness in a Toastmasters’ contest I thought, I have to do this once… or maybe twice…this is the second time that, taking advantage of the situation, I do it. During my Toastmasters journey I’ve learned that the best way to give an entertaining speech is over a beer.

Dear friends, is this glass half empty or half full?

It depends on your point of view. If you are a pessimistic person you will see the glass half empty, but if you are an optimistic person you will see the glass half full. You can think of every life situation in either negative or positive terms, as a trouble or as an opportunity. Right now I see an opportunity; an opportunity to take a sip of beer.

Again, we have a half empty or a half full glass.

Dear friends, let me ask you a couple of questions: do you prefer to read an e-book or a “traditional book”? Do you read the news on the Internet or in the newspaper?

Reading is one of my passions. I prefer traditional books. They have something special, its touch, its smell. Reading a good traditional book sitting on a comfortable place is an inimitable experience. I have hundreds of books at home and in my parents’ house and even in my office. I need a lot of space for them. Maybe one day I will change my mind and I will start to read e-books to save space at home or for any other reason.

The main problem with e-books is piracy. It’s easy to download books on the Internet illegally. Since e-book arrival, many bookshops have closed.

And what about media? Although I prefer to read a newspaper, I usually read the news on the Internet for free. You do the same, don’t you?

Some years ago the boards of the newspaper’s companies made a wrong decision, they put the contents of theirs newspapers on the Internet for free. They thought that Internet was just a little piece of the same cake, and the buyer would pay for the newspaper while they would earn an extra money with advertising on the Internet. Mistake!

If today you are reading the news for free, will you pay tomorrow for it? I don’t think so. Only If all of them decide to charge for the contents at the same time, its current business model will continue. But this kind of decisions are strongly forbidden in a free market.

Because of this wrong decision thousands of journalists have been fired and hundreds of newspapers’ companies have been closed around all over the world.

As I said before, you can think of every life situation as a trouble or as an opportunity. You can think: thousands of people have been fired? Where in hell do you see an opportunity?

In 2005 Arianna Huffington found an online newspaper named Huffington Post with only 3 workers. She created a new business model, we can call it wiki journalist where people can share and comment new. In 2011 The Huffington Post had more visitors than The New York Times or The Wall Street Journal.

I’m an optimistic person and, again, I see here an opportunity, not to take a sip of beer this time, but why not to find a job as a blogger?

Dear friends, we can waste our whole life watching our glass half empty, looking for an excuse for our failures. Or we can realize that times are changing very fast and be ready to change our mind and find the way to fill the glass again.

David Torija

Acerca de David Torija

Economist and MBA. Business Development Manager, Advisor and Business Strategist. Passionate about Management, Finance, Marketing, Sales, Social Media, Writing and Public Speaking. Cross Cultural and Global Minded. Hard Worker. Entrepreneur. Optimistic, Enthusiastic: Always look on the bright side of life.
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