Tag Archive | comfort zones

An Introverts Attempt at Extroverting -or-Wow, I Really Suck at Peopling


img_0526I did something last night. Something so totally out of character and my realm of comfort that I am still in a bit of shock. I’m kind of proud of myself, and still slightly mortified if you want to know the truth.

Here’s the thing . . . I am a little introverted, maybe a little more than a lot introverted. Full disclosure and all, I’m not good with or around people. I can fake it fairly well, most of the time, and once you get to know me it might even surprise you just how terrible I am at the whole people thing. For the most part, I tend to NOT people much.

I prefer to sit back and watch without engaging.

I have friends. They love me and I love them right back. They accept my ‘me’ness, I don’t know why, but thank God in Heaven they do. I recently found out IRL means ‘in real life’, why we need acronyms for every blasted thing we say, I have no clue, but they are there. Anyway, I have some amazing IRL friends (it hurts me to use internet shortcuts so I won’t be doing that again), the thing is, I typically think of my virtual friends as real life friends as well.

After all, they’re real and are a part of my life in some way, so in my mind, they are as real as those I can touch. Except they live in my computer. They only know me by my words and in my words introversion is just a concept. I can extrovert the crap out of words on a screen.

So back to last night, I attempted to extrovert.

I kind of made an ass out of myself.

But I crossed a line I should probably cross a little more often. I tripped over that line, but damn it, I crossed it.

See, I went out to see a show, my son was running the sound for one of our local playhouses, it was a production of A Chorus Line (it was fabulous, by the way). During intermission I thought I recognized someone from my online world.

My husband and my son told me I should go say hello. I cursed them under my breath and sat back in my seat, but I was thinking about it. And guess what?

I fricking did it.

I walked over and asked if her name was Stephanie, it was. It was her. What in the actual eff had I just done! I was people-ing!

I was a little, maybe a lot rambly and nervous and I’m fairly certain I looked and sounded like an ass. Can you believe I was actually shaking?

She was just as adorably lovely as she is online, I may have been a bit star struck as well, I’ve been reading her awesome and hilarious bloggy-bits for quite some time. She introduced me to her daughter, I don’t know the etiquette for being introduced to daughters, I reached out and shook her hand, are you supposed to do that? I think I said she was lovely, but I can’t be sure, I might have just said lovely, or I might have simply said it in my head. I dunno. I was loony-toons and so out of my element, and I don’t even really have an element.

I remember thinking about how awful my hair looked, how weird my voice sounded coming out of my facehole, and how embarrassing it was to talk to people when diabetes has stolen more than a few of your teeth.

You wanna know something? I am so, so glad I told at voice inside my head to shut up. The one telling me not to say anything. The one telling me to stay put. The one telling me I would make a fool out of myself. Well little voice, I did it despite your whisperings.

I’ll be in recovery mode for about a week now, but I did it!

Stephanie, thank you for being gracious and lovely and taking the time to talk with me for a few moments, and thank you for not signaling security to remove the somewhat psycho chick away from your table . . .

Comfort zones, caves, and stepping out. A little.

Comfort Zone


These past few weeks have been a whirlwind for me, I’m a little overwhelmed in many ways. I ventured into the cyber world further than I ever thought I would and have made some amazing connections. Some of which I can already tell will bloom into more than passing acquaintances, I’ve found a few kindred spirits and friendships have began to blossom.

It is strange and amazing and I am thankful for it all, but still . . . It is new and maybe a little bit scary.

I am doing my best to embrace this new aspect of my life, I actually think I am doing quite well with it all, but there is a part of me that just wants to crawl back into my little cave and shut tight the door behind me, locking up all the little locks I use to keep the world from coming in.

I’m not going to, not today, hopefully not ever. If I do retreat, and I likely will, it will hopefully only be for short spells when I need to reflect, rejuvenate, and catch my breath.

I’ve been given an opportunity to expand my corner of the world, to branch out and see what there is to see beyond my own horizon. It’s beautiful and vast, parts of it I cannot wait to explore and other parts I already know will remain distant territory I will not be journeying to.

These new people I am encountering — some of them are so very different from me, yet with each one, despite these differences, there is a single thread somewhere in our own unique tapestries which sort of weave us together.

There is part of me feeling so far out of not just my comfort zone, but my league. I am reading the words these weavers of thought create and I find myself thinking, wow, I wish I could do that, and then one of them will comment and say, I love what you’ve written, I wish I could do that, and I am left in a state of shock and amazement.

I haven’t yet figured out how to manage my time and my energies, new projects are being presented to me, all of which I want to accept with a resounding, Yes! I would love to contribute! But how to choose and when to find time enough to dedicate just the right amount of me to these things is tricky.

Baby steps. I have to simply take baby steps.

Thanks for keeping me company as I find my way.

Crystal R. Cook