I believe that to grow ourselves, we need to get a little uncomfortable. We need to step out from what we are used to and push ourselves further than we think we can go.
I know there are those that don't mind meeting new people or being put into a new social situation, but for others...it can be downright terrifying. Especially if the people that you're meeting have only interacted with you via the internet...one of the most comfortable "places" in existence.
Online you can kind of be anyone you want to be. You can recreate yourself, if you wish. You have time to think of witty jokes and think deep thoughts and have time to formulate composed and eloquent responses. That's one of the reasons I enjoy writing...because in face-to-face interactions I can be socially awkward, or that's my perspective anyhow. (This perception tends to hold me back from accepting social invites, but I'm working on it!)
But it can also be the best experience ever!
I actually met my current roomie online. Weird right? I randomly saw that one of my guy friends on DailyMile, who I know lived in the city I attended school, tagged a girl that he ran with. I knew I needed to meet people in my new city, otherwise it would be a lonely couple of years until I graduated. Yes, I have a couple of friends from school now, however most of them are about five years younger than me and sometimes it just helps to associate with people your own age with similar circumstances and views on life. I decided I would contact this random girl to see if she ran in a group or would want to run sometime. What did I have to lose right? (This is something I constantly have to remind myself when doing things that make me uncomfortable.)
Well she sent me a message back, friended me on Facebook, and gave me all of the details on her running group and since I told her I was a slow runner, she made sure to assure me that there were lots of different skill levels in the running group (which, by the way, is called Freaky Fast Runners haha).
But something caught my eye towards the end of the message...she was actually looking for a roommate since her current one was getting married and moving out. I had been KILLING myself for the past two months trying to figure out the best place to live and if I should try to find a roommate and who the heck would want to move to a new place in January. My prayers were certainly answered with this random online interaction.
We met up for coffee a couple of weeks later and the rest is history!
I actually pushed myself outside of my comfort zone (in more ways than one) last night when I agreed to go out with her and her friends for her birthday last night. (PS it would totally make her day if you wished her Happy Birthday! @AmberSmith1011 :) ) I met lots of new people, I drank a little more than I usually do (because my usual is zero lol). I went places I've never been before and somehow ended up running in the rain at 3am to get to her car. Okay the rain part wasn't fun, but the rest of the night once again proved that I need to step out of my comfort zone more often.
|The only evidence that last night really happened. Poor pretty purple shoes!|
Stepping out of my comfort zone is exactly what I did last May.
I attended Blend Retreat, my very first blogger meet-up on any scale, ever. (Blend=Blogger+Friend)
It's funny looking back because I was terrified to buy the ticket and sign up for a room, but I just felt like...I needed to do it.
I needed to step out from behind my blog, like Lindsay said in her post the other day.
I needed to get SUPER uncomfortable and meet these people that I'd been interacting with face-to-face.
After buying the ticket, having no plan on how I was going to get to Boulder, Colorado...drive maybe? I realized I had to start telling a couple of people that I was going to a blogging retreat with people I've never met before in a city I've never gone to.
Seriously, the looks I got were priceless at times. I got asked questions like, "So you're going to a blogging retreat...to...blog?" After I got over the embarrassment of being a weird blogger..or whatever I felt I was at that point, it kind of got fun telling people. I think this confidence came after I spent the most challenging and exilerating weekend of the year with people that I now call some of my best friends.
And I was actually thinking of bailing out the night before out of fear! Fear of the unknown. Fear of meeting new people. Fear of the flying process and getting lost in an airport.
But I did it. I overcame my fears and am stronger for it. Did I also mention the fact that I met a great bunch of gals in the process??
I know it might seem weird, or scary, but registration for Blend Retreat 2013 is opening up tonight! As in now probably if you're reading this.
Or maybe you can't relate to any of these fears and you just want to get out and network with some like-minded bloggers. This is for you!
I'm not vain enough to think that you all might want to meet me in person (if you haven't already), but there are some pretty sweet gals..dare I say "big time bloggers" that will be there. Blend Retreat is for both bloggers AND readers and basically all we do is eat good food, do a bootcamp or two and get to meet some really awesome people who do what we do and who can relate to us. There is beauty in mutual understanding, don't you think?
|People who appreciate working out...even on the weekends. And who don't mind having photos taken of their rear ends..?|
Won't you consider it? I know I would LOVE to meet you in person!
*~Amanda aka Semi-Health Nut~*
Need more convincing? Check out all my recaps:
Blend Retreat: A Foodie's Dream
Blend Retreat Kicked my Booty
Blend: Out of my Comfort Zone
Other Blend related things:
Des Moines Foodie Fun
Mini Blend Weekend
Also, stay tuned for a giveaway coming soon!! :)