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Codifying Altruism into Your Relationships


Last week I gave Speech #10 from the Toastmasters Competent Communicator (CC) manual.  The objectives of Speech #10 are lofty:

  • To inspire the audience by appealing to noble motives and challenging the audience to achieve a higher level of beliefs or achievement
  • Appeal to the audience’s needs and emotions, using stories, anecdotes and quotes to add drama.
  • Avoid using notes.
  • Time is 8-10 minutes.

My personal goal for speech #10 was to leverage all of what I’d learned over the last three years in Toastmasters including: organized writing, strong opening and conclusion, smooth transitions, gestures, vocal variety, and acting vignettes.  From the feedback I received, I nailed the speech objectives and my own personal goal.  When you give Speech #10, Toastmasters awards you a ”CC” pin indicating that you are officially a Competent Communicator  (all that work and now I’m only competent…I’d like to rename the award to the Good Communicator award).  Enjoy the speech, while I enjoy being competent.

Codifying Altruism into Your Relationships Speech Link


Developing Your Personal Code of Unilateral Relationship Virtues

This speech focuses on altruism, relationships, character, and habits and provides a roadmap for injecting altruism into your relationships.  The technique I leverage at the end of the speech is called Developing Your Personal Code of Unilateral Relationship Virtues, which is from a book named Buddha’s Brain.  If you want to create your own personal code, here are the steps.

Step 1: Write your code

  • Write your personal code of unilateral relationship virtues
  • This could be a handful of words or more extensive dos and don’ts.
  • Aim for language that is powerful and motivating, that makes sense to your head and touches your heart.


  • Listen more, talk less.
  • Don’t yell or threaten people, and don’t let them do that to me.
  • Every day, ask my wife three questions in a row about how things are going for her.
  • Get home by six every night to have dinner with my family.
  • Say what I need.
  • Be loving.
  • Keep my promises.

Step 2: Develop the habit of living your code

  • Visualize yourself acting according to your code no matter what happens,
  • Imagine the good feelings and other rewards that this will bring you.
  • Take these in to help motivate yourself to truly live by your code.
  • Then when you do live by it and things go well, take that in too.

Step 1 took me about 15 minutes to complete and you can implement Step 2 by reviewing your code just once a week.  If you make just a little time for completing these two steps, soon I think you’ll start to see positive changes in your relationships and interactions with people as I have.


Every man must decide whether he will walk in the light of creative altruism of in the darkness of destructive selfishness

– Martin Luther King Jr.