Comfort Zone

27 Apr

If you know me well, you may be surprised by the following statement: meeting new people is terrifying to me.

I’ve been this way since I was a wee little one. I can’t really explain why it makes me so anxious, but I can explain why I force myself through the process anyways: because I love people. I love learning from people and I love laughing with people and if I didn’t bypass this little fear of mine I would never get the joys of meeting some pretty amazing people.

Now this would be shocking to friends and family because they never see this fear. What they do see is a loud, chatty girl always telling stories and laughing with the group. I would credit this to my ten years of hospitality work. Every day I had to go to work and force myself to walk up to a table with a big smile on my face and talk to strangers. And when I moved into tending bar, I had to work on the art of small talk, as well as entertaining large groups. While talking to complete strangers did get easier through the years, my jitters are still there. And I still have to overcome them.

While stepping out of my comfort zone is almost never easy, it’s always worth it in the end.

I almost quit Marathonfest ten times before I even started for fear of meeting my running group. Now those women (and our one token guy) are such a great support system and I spend countless hours laughing with them every week. I’m even traveling to Cincinnati with some of them next week for my second marathon, Flying Pig Marathon.

I was scared to death of trying yoga for the first time, until Carolina from Peas in a Blog let me tag along with her to a class. Now I’ve got a new addiction.

And most recently (last night to be exact) I walked into a room full of strangers, (well… some of which I know only through their blogs that I follow) and I met a group of lady bloggers here in the Orlando area. Now, I’m not as brave as I appear… I dragged my BFF Rox there with me so she could  protect me can pick the brains of seasoned bloggers, which I’m happy to say she was able to do so (on both counts). I got to meet some lovely ladies, learn some new things and laugh a lot.

I look forward to the next meet-up. Thanks to the ladies for being so nice to the noobs!

So the moral of this bloggy blog: if I never stepped outside of my comfort zone, I would miss out on so many opportunities. I will continue to tuck my clammy hands into my pockets, put a smile on my face and start simple with “Hi, I’m Hemarie…”

When was the last time you stepped outside of your comfort zone?

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6 Responses to “Comfort Zone”

  1. Faith @ For the Health of It April 27, 2012 at 8:41 am #

    Bummer that I wasn’t able to make it! The meetups are always so much fun. They can be nervewracking for sure though!

    • Hemarie April 27, 2012 at 6:56 pm #

      Maybe I’ll meet you at the next one!

  2. MomJovi April 27, 2012 at 11:07 pm #

    It was so nice to meet you last night. I’m so glad you came! And I think you’ll find that nearly every one of us felt the same exact way at our first meet-up! But thanks to coming to these meetings over the past year or so, we not only met some blogging friends, we made some real-life friends! Looking forward to getting to know you — and your blog — better too!!

    • Hemarie April 28, 2012 at 8:24 pm #

      Thanks! I really look forward to the next meet-up. And now that we’ve met I won’t be scared at all. Well… Maybe just a little. 😉

  3. nancim72 April 28, 2012 at 7:12 am #

    This is a GREAT post. I am the same way, always afraid to meet new people but then I am so happy I did. There is a Tampa bloggers group that I hope to meet up with in May. I will be in the same boat you were. It sounds like you had a great time!

    • Hemarie April 28, 2012 at 8:24 pm #

      Yes! Go… Totally worth it!

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