Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Blogher Anxiety

To lots of people who know me, I talk a lot and once I get started, I can go on and on. That is around people I know well and feel comfortable with but with a large crowd, I feel inadequate and my self confidence is in the toilet (where it has been stuck lately).

This will be my 3rd time going to Blogher. The first time I was like a deer in headlights, in way over my head. The second time, thought I new the ropes but it was still overwhelming and I had a hard time fitting in. This year, I will probably still be in over my head.

It is like I clam up and think that “Why would they like me?” or “Shut Up Jennifer, they don’t want to listen to you.”  Of course, it makes me awkward, until that sign with some people, that I would get along with them and I click.

When it does get overwhelming, I will go an hide for a little bit. Find a quiet corner and open a book for a chapter, tends to do the trick. Sometimes I might slink down to the bar and have a glass of liquid courage. 

Another thing that really helped me when I needed it, was the Serenity Suite. My first year at Blogher, it was a welcome respite. This year I am volunteering again to hopefully help someone that was in my position.

Last year I had a little nervous breakdown after losing my phone. It was the tipping point and once I went over, it all came out. The people I met during my little breakdown were very welcoming and listened. It was a total relief. I was amazed at the support I got during that time, all over little me.

One of the other big things that helped is opening up. I would say that I blogged about my battle with depression and I was often amazed at the doors that opened to me. Once I said that, people opened up and confessed their mental health battles.

This year, I am just going to take a deep breath and hit the conference. Will I worry if people like me? Probably. Will some people not like me? Definitely. Will it stop me? No.

17 comments:

  1. And you may be surprised about just how many people do like you! I have learned that many times it is really difficult to determine whether someone likes you or not. Recently I have been surprised by a couple of people that I was SURE didn't like me and then they did something that made it clear that they did. Who knew?

    I have also found that when you open about your struggles, it is amazing how many others will confide that they have similar struggles. Everyone is just afraid to talk about it. So good for you for bringing it out in the open!

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    1. I tend to assume the worst, probably so I won't get hurt.

      Opening up helps me and you. I try to remember that.

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  2. You have a lot of courage to go to that conference. I think it sounds like something I want to do but my anxiety won't let me. I feel like it will be too nerve wracking.

    Have a great time and I hope things go well for you!

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    1. I try not let my anxiety overwhelm me but when I feel like it is, I just take myself away for a bit.

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  3. Well I hope I get the chance to meet you!

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  4. Sounds great, and I know you'll do great! I wish I was going.

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  5. Take a deep breath and plunge in. You will be GREAT!!!

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  6. I think a lot of people are burdened with the same worries. I know I am. It's my first year and I'm worried I'll drown in the sea of activity.

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    1. We just have to know when to take a 15 minute break and take a deep breath.

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  7. I also get anxiety spending too much time with people I do know - I need my alone time! The Serenity Sweet sounds like a great place. I'm going to BlogHer for the first time, in the hopes of connecting with other bloggers. Fingers crossed I don't retreat too much! P.S. I used to live in Quincy :)

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    1. I am hosting the Serenity Suite from 1-3 on Friday. You should come by then :)

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    2. I am making my schedule this weekend, so I'll make sure to add that! I look forward to meeting you :)

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  8. Thank you for sharing. This is my first Blogher

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  9. I'm so with you Jen!
    I feel like behind my computer I am very social. But IRL, I get very self-conscious and worry about the same things you do. I often think "why bother?" when trying to add to a conversation because I often believe that no one will think my opinions are valid or important OR I believe that I don't have anything significant to add to what is being said.
    I'm all about liquid courage. And xanax. I tend to loosen up a little, become a little less reserved but obviously I can't rely on those things all the time.
    My best advice to you (and myself) is just to lean into the discomfort a little. I'm sure 95% of everyone there feels the same way! Can't wait to meet up with you on Wednesday!

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