I wasn’t born with one of those personalities where I can just talk to anyone. I’m AWFUL at making small talk. This year at Blissdom, despite promising myself that I’d suddenly become one of those super outgoing people, I spent a lot of time thinking about how I should be introducing myself to new people, how I should be joining in conversations, and generally being someone other than myself.
Here’s just a brief glimpse of the evolution of my social behaviors at Blissdom ’12.
Wednesday night: Arrive at the Opryland Hotel and panic when I see people I know, sure they won’t know me. They do. Hug awkwardly, followed up with nervous conversation.
Decide to hide in my hotel room until my conference wingman arrives.
Realize I’m hungry. Check Twitter and see if anyone I know is tweeting that they are going out to dinner. Phew! See Rachel‘s tweet and spend ten minutes giving myself a pep talk to walk out of the hotel room.
Spend a lovely dinner with several bloggers and even make conversation fairly easily with several people I had never met before.
Feel puffed up like a peacock for actually talking! To other people!
Go to bed promising myself that I’m going to be a new, chatty, super friendly version of myself on Thursday.
Thursday: Say hello to old friends, hug, squee.
Go to a meet-up for new conference attendees. Feel armpits become increasingly sweaty. Force myself to say hello and be friendly to three strangers.
Feel paralyzed with social anxiety after that three stranger exertion and decide to go back to my room.
Go to a cocktail party where I feel like a dud at making conversation.
Search the party frantically for people I know, while feeling annoyed with myself for not branching out.
Go to bed promising myself that I’m going to be a new, chatty, super friendly version of myself on Friday.
Friday: See more old friends, hug, and squee.
Play the role of community leader during several photography sessions. Smile and make small talk with new people. Think to myself, “see? This isn’t so hard!”
Go to lunch and completely fail to introduce myself to most of the people at my table. Think to myself that NOW I’m going to introduce myself. No, NOW. Okay, for real-NOW. Get up and leave without introducing myself.
Kick myself on the way back to my room.
Go to the Hallmark bloggers get together and talk to Rachel and think to myself, “Why can’t I talk to people easily like Rachel does!?!”
Head out for the Girl’s Night Out festivities and drink a few alcoholic beverages.
Feel a bit (okay, A LOT) of liquid courage.
Become incredibly friendly, talk easily with strangers, and even introduce myself to blog crushes.
Go to bed promising myself that I’m going to be a new, chatty, super friendly version of myself on Saturday, minus the liquid courage.
Saturday: EXHAUSTION sets in. Unable to make conversation with anyone.
Awkwardly smile and stand around most of the day, completely unable to spend the energy it would take to put a sentence together.
Go to the Girl’s Night In events and watch as people dance and sing Karaoke and think to myself, “Damn, I’m missing out. LIKE I ALWAYS DO.”
Go to bed promising myself that I’m going to be a new, chatty, super friendly version of myself NEXT year at Blissdom.
So in conclusion, if we met anytime other than Friday night-oh, say-between 9:30 pm and 2 am, then, “Hi!! It’s really great to meet you! What’s your blog about? Where are you from? Those shoes? Are amazing! Did you hear Rascal Flatts is coming Friday night? Won’t that be fun?! Are you having a good time? Blissdom is really great, isn’t it?! Yeah, it’s been great getting to know you!”