Have you ever been in a situation when you didn’t get the opportunity to say what you had to say? Take that opportunity to create a great story. You can literally rewrite history. Turn back the hands of time and get it out. Make it as colorful and outrageous as you like.
As I have mentioned in a previous post, I have a job at the university I graduated from and am surrounded by many people with interests similar to mine. Recently, I, along with some of my coworkers who are also English graduates, decided we would take out an English faculty member for lunch. Our first lunch was with the head of the English department. We had a wonderful time and got some really good advice and encouragement from him. He even gave us books! This past week we took out another faculty member. This lunch was equally as enjoyable, but in a different way. This faculty member made plans to host all of us along with our children to her home. She also gave us encouragement and advice, but the tone was entirely different than our other lunch. I noticed that I and my other introverted friend were much more talkative. We all laughed, made jokes, told stories, and contributed equally to the conversation. We were much more relaxed. We were getting comfortable in our little community.
It is very important for all of us to build a community. Even us introverts need a community. I am not saying that we will grow into extroverts, but it will make things a lot more comfortable for us in group situation when you have built a community. We may have to seek some people out and it may happen by accident as it did for me, but let it happen and give it a chance. There is no reason why you can’t pick the people you want to be around. We all need community and others to share our life experiences with. It can be a community based on our interests, our faith, or whatever you wish. As introverts we would be doing ourselves and others a disservice by not experiencing the benefits of being part of a community. Those who aren’t introverts need to get used to who we are. They need to see that we really do enjoy people, but we seriously need alone time. It is important for us to be understood and that cannot happen if we don’t take a little step outside of our comfort zones.
Today’s Writing Prompt: Imagine that one of your favorite mythical characters or animals actually existed. What would you do?
This writing prompt was inspired by an extremely funny and sort of sad incident that I experienced with a coworker years ago. My coworker, who was a very intelligent and articulate man with a serious drug problem, told me a very interesting story. I came in to work one day this coworker began to tell me that he saw a unicorn in the parking lot. He went on to describe how beautiful the unicorn was and that it came within an inch of his face before running away. Then he said he ran after the unicorn for a while before losing him. My coworker had the most convincing tone and coupled with my ignorance of his drug problem, I was becoming excited. I really wanted there to be a unicorn in the parking lot (I knew better, but a girl can still hope). As a child I loved unicorns and always hoped they were real, but later that day I found out about my coworker’s drug problem. After telling his unicorn story to several other people, he was asked to take some time off and was referred to a drug addiction and recovery program.
This prompt is for all those who are still hoping for the existence of unicorns.
Anyone who knows me knows that I love to toot my own horn. I also like to encourage the toots of others. I think is its very important to find things about yourself that you love and compliment yourself on them often. You should also not shy away from complimenting others. I have a proposition for all who read this post. Find at least 10 things you like about yourself and then find at least 10 people and compliment them on something.
iBourgie’s Ten Things She Likes About Herself
- I am a voracious reader. I have always had a love for reading. I will read absolutely anything. In addition to any genre of fiction, I love reading medical journals, magazine articles, textbooks, etc. Although I am an introvert, I have been able to use my love of reading to find something to talk about when I begin to feel awkward in social situations.
- My legs. No matter how much weight I lose or gain my calves always stay in shape. I got them from my grandmother. lol
- I am very silly. Most people are shocked by my sense of humor. Who says introverts aren’t funny? Once you get to know me, I will have you in stitches.
- My smile. It is huge and I can’t help it. I have a big mouth and I love it. I love it even more because I used to try to hide it and have grown to love it.
- I am generous. I genuinely love giving. Nothing make me happier than being able to do something for someone else.
- I don’t take myself too seriously. I make mistakes and that’s fine. So does everybody else. There is no need to dwell on them. I learn from them.
- I am forgiving. Without forgiveness, you are stagnant. I forgive others and I forgive myself.
- I know when enough is enough. I know my limits and I will not push myself past them, nor will I allow anyone else to.
- I can take criticism. Being able to take constructive criticism is the only way you can get better at anything. Not only can I take it, I ask for it.
- I have a great son! I can’t take all of the credit for it, but I had something to do with it. I am so proud of him.
Whenever you feel down, remember the things you like about yourself.
I have recently rejoined the workforce. I have been out of the loop for about 8 years and my social skills needed a bit of polish. I was lucky to get a job working at my university. So, I know a lot of my coworkers. Many of them are also graduates of the university. I made friends with a lot of the professor as well when I was a student. Needless to say, it was a relatively easy transition.
Although I was in familiar territory, I really didn’t get to know any of the aforementioned people socially. All of them were interesting, intelligent, and good people, but being the introvert that I am, I didn’t make the extra effort to seek any additional social interaction. Recently, I was asked to lunch by a colleague of mine. I accepted because I can generally handle a one-on-one lunch date. She and I had often talked about getting together outside of work, but my introverted self did not push the issue even though I think she is a great person. On the ride to the restaurant, we talked and laughed and I started to plan future outings with her in my mind as she and I have more in common than I could have ever imagined. When we arrived at the restaurant I was told by my companion that several more of our coworkers would be joining us for lunch. I smiled on the outside, but I could feel myself powering down. I knew all of the people we were meeting and I liked them, but they would all be together with me at the table.
When we arrived the group had already assembled in a very large booth and they were beckoning us to slide in. We did. The group we were meeting have very big personalities and I love that about them, but it can be draining for a person like me. While sitting at the table, something amazing was happening. My lunch buddy was powering down too! She too was smiling nervously and way too much while nodding in agreement when making eye contact with someone. I don’t think either of us said much after sitting down. The rest of the group dominated the conversation. Of course I didn’t mind and she didn’t either. Nonetheless, I really enjoyed lunch, but I was glad when it was over. When my companion and I got back in the car, we both recognized the other’s introversion. We were relieved to find out we shared some level of tolerable discomfort during lunch. She suggested that our next lunch would be a one-on-one and we could actually talk to each other. I was thrilled! She also suggested a tea and reading day. The plan is to bring a book to one of the tea shops downtown, sit, drink tea, and read. I was thrilled to know that someone else in the world thinks of that as a good time!
I am so glad that I had the chance get to know this person. The most wonderful thing is that she too is an introvert and although we enjoy each other’s company, we can be content just drinking tea and reading books. No talking necessary.
I would like to encourage all of us introverts to take some small steps out out our comfort zones and get to know someone new. That someone may be the type of person you make a lasting connection with.
Last week I had a very persistent cough. I didn’t have a cold, but there was some construction going on in the building I work in. Surely there were things being conjured up from the depths of the walls, floors, and ceilings. So I decided to modify one of my grandmother’s cough remedies to sooth my cough.
iBourgie’s Natural Cough Remedy
1 tablespoon of honey (preferably local to your area)
1 tablespoon of lemon juice or the juice of half a lemon
1 tablepoon of Bragg’s apple cider vinegar
a pinch of cayenne pepper
1/2 clove of minced garlic (optional)
This remedy seemed to work instantly. You make take as needed. You may store it in the fridge or in a cool place. Make it in small batches and if you have any left over, mix it in with a glass of water and drink it down. Because of the honey, don’t give to children under the age of 1. My grandmother used it with garlic. I have used it with and without garlic and achieved satisfactory results both ways.