Well, I've been working on that.
My job requires that I interact with dozens of people every day.
This used to intimidate me to the point of anxiety-rich tears just a matter of months ago. I desperately wanted to be a social butterfly -- flitting from one group to another with ease and making everyone comfortable in the process. My distinct inability to carry on small talk prevented this dream from being achieved.
Like I said, I've been working on that.
While I'm not amazing at it, I can definitely strike up a conversation with a stranger, make them feel comfortable and establish a relationship out of thin air. My bedside manner is gentle and playful but authoritative. Things that make me feel flustered and inadequate are no longer as apparent as they once were because I am learning to reassure first, fix the problem, then calm myself.
It's still really difficult, though.
Last week I was monitoring a guest and said something that obviously freaked her out. I tried to reassure her before walking away, but the damage was done. A few minutes later she was pale and unwell. I feel responsible for scaring her into getting sick. It's kind of horrible.
It may be cliche, but talking about the weather really is the ultimate stand-by. Everyone is affected by changes in the weather and commenting on it can either be just a bit of fluff or the start to quick dialog about the best ski runs. I love it!
The biggest boon to this endeavor is that my confidence level is sky high at the moment. I feel comfortable in my own skin for the first time in my life. I don't care if people think I'm fat, ugly, insipid, or uninspired -- I know it isn't true and my opinion matters more than that of a stranger. I can accept that there will be times I mess up, hurt someone, or do something truly stupid because I recognize that it's all part of being human and therefore fallible.
These may seem like pretty simple concepts, but they have only recently been run home and lodged into my brain.
I'm no Chatty Cathy, but I'm not a Muttering Mable either.
I'm a Zany ZAM and I like it that way.
|I just like this picture.|