Meeting New People as an Adult
Being the new kid never gets easier, does it? We get older, but the story stays the same. Nervousness, anxiety, sweaty palms (or worse). For me, this tends to bubble up to a point where I feel frozen. It seems so overwhelming putting yourself out there again that you just want to crawl under your blankets and watch a show where other people figure things out. So tempting, but no one ever got anywhere by hibernating through all the tough stuff.
I’ve taken to ignoring my inner brown bear (or hermit crab, if you identify more with ocean dwelling critters). It’s not easy, and certain things still leave a giant lump in my throat that doesn’t go away until it’s over and I’m back at home, snug and warm with a glass of red wine in hand. Things that may seem trivial or easy or “everyday” that, for me, demands an inner pep talk before I take the plunge into an icy unknown. Things like striking up a conversation with a stranger, deciding to participate in a photo-shoot to end the “mommy wars”, hosting a playdate in my home, or getting back into the work force with a bunch of people I’ve never met before (and who happen to be younger than me by a decade or so).
Challenge and Growth
A lot of time and energy goes into this personal quest of mine for challenge and growth, but I receive so much more in return. I have met countless wonderful people, I finally started my blog, I got word out regarding something I feel passionately about and, believe it or not, it is getting easier. I am quicker to smile and say hello in social situations. I feel more confident in my own strengths and abilities. Heck, I would even jump at the opportunity to write for a brand-new site with an all-new audience. It’s still not easy, but it’s definitely worthwhile.
The overwhelming feedback I get from people lately is that I’m outgoing and I make them feel comfortable. I even had a new friend tell me that she thinks I am a “cheerleader for human potential”. Wow! Is there a greater title out there?
It all started with me trying to reach my own potential, so that my son may grow up in a world where he’s not so terrified of being the new kid. A world where new people, places, and things are just endless opportunities to learn, share and grow.
Because that’s what I want for me, and that’s what I want for my family:
To get out of our shells a little more often.
To leave the den a little earlier each spring.
To embrace the cold outdoors and warm it up by our mere presence.