Risk Talking

Introverts lack social tact on what to say and when to say it. That’s a benefit. Introverts gain the advantage over those who can’t stop talking: We surprise and shock others when we do talk.

When I feel it’s time to express myself, sometimes I give it a second thought, but that’s where I draw the line. Then I just do it and live with the fun or consequences. These are the things that make life exciting.

After waiting more than a year, I expressed something to someone because I wanted an answer. It wasn’t gentle and I got that answer, even if it wasn’t what I had hoped to hear. I may have awoken something in her. I may have shaken a monkey off my back: that I have been holding myself back from taking risks.

It’s a challenge for introverts to gauge timing, which is a big part of social tact. Saying something you feel is important, and others feel shocked, can hurt a lot. It often makes you not want to express yourself anymore. You feel misunderstood, not important, and all that depressive crap.

I won’t drag on with all that. What I will do is go into how not having tact is a blessing.

By not having all that social tact, you are actually more free to express yourself than people who adhere to the unwritten, unexplained rules of communication. You’re free because you’re not holding your thoughts and timing to a standard, situation, or method of delivery.

Often people like to ask me why I don’t talk often. I just don’t. It’s not something I practice, so therefore, it’s not something I do. It’s not that I’m not a good communicator: it’s that I don’t inhibit my communication when I do talk.

Then they say, well, that’s not polite to just say what you want. Truth is, it’s more polite to be honest, because honesty builds trust. Even if it hurts. Changing what you say and how you say it is along the same lines as lying. The risk here is that you’re slowly building up walls of dishonesty, waiting to crumble down at a later date.

I’d rather be honest, shocking, and have people resent that, than to be surrounded with fake people who can’t express themselves.

You don’t have to be nice about it. Sometimes, people need to know you’re not feeling happy with something. Enough of this nonsense of everyone hiding their bad feelings so everyone has a good time, and everything is just fucking fine.

I want to love a woman I know. I want to support her and make love to her every day. I want her to be strong and independent, and still be loved by someone. If I didn’t say anything, if I didn’t take the risks, she would still only have a few clues as to how I feel.

So, the other day, I said screw it, and told her exactly how I felt. Yes, it hurt, and yes, it may have caused some friction that perhaps wasn’t there to begin with. Or maybe it gave light to that friction, and made her finally express what she wants and doesn’t want to me. Maybe she needed that.

I’ll never know, unless she’s willing to take those risks with talking with me. In my experience, women don’t do that, cause they’re just as afraid as I’ve been. It’d be a real surprise, and would restore my faith in people if she did.

Anxiety Sucks

Anxiety has a way of affecting my work. It’s limiting, distracting, and damaging. It’s been more than a month since I wrote anything in the sequel to a work of fiction, and a week since I’ve drawn a comic strip about the characters.

I think in the coming couple of months, my roommate will want me to move out if I don’t find work. So it’s putting me into this really shitty position, with a lot of fear of the future hanging over my head. I’m tired of this cycle; I’ve been here before, and it sucked then, too.

Things did work out then, but only to get by – for five years. I don’t think I can stand doing that again; putting my own work on hold for another five years. And then another, and so on and so on, until I’m too old to work. Like where my mother is heading; she’s been working since she was fourteen, and now has some bone-related health problems at nearly fifty-two.

Something about just constantly getting by is ticking me off. I can’t stand that shit anymore; it seems to be the demand society wants to throw on me. There’s little, if any, interest of anyone in my family in the things I want to do: writing and stand up comedy.

My brother tells me I need to get a job, and I know he means well; I want an income – not another decade of bullshit. I’ve been through enough of that. I’ve been through that stuff for my entire life. It’s amazing how much of my life has gone by doing a lot of work, and how little of it I have got out of it.

Maybe I’m not shooting high enough. But then, the demands on the higher jobs expect my attitude to be adjusted to it, too. I’m sick of that nonsense where people expect me to be some perfect little gentleman. It’s not me. I’m not a dick to people; but I’m also not there to change my attitude to someone else’s expectations. I need to be able to remain honest in everything I do; integrity is important to me. More important than a dollar.

The little support from my family is annoying. I have relatives that haven’t even bothered to take a look at a comic strip – something that might take less than a minute of their time. It took six months to get my sister to read one of my works. I don’t know; everyone’s life seems so busy when I’m not busy, and when I had a job, they seemed welcome to having me help.

It’s irritating. Having done so much work, and then having to return to do the same thing, knowing neither has brought me closer to a more free life. I’ve felt trapped by this notion that I should have a boss; that someone else should take one-third of my day.

So I’m constantly reminded of this – staring at Craigslist, Monster (which sucks), and other job boards out there. What makes things worse, none of my friends seem to give a rat’s ass to help me find work. A lot of loneliness; and I have no professional contacts. It feels like I’ve been ripped away from any chance of finding work because of the obsessive compulsiveness of potential employers.

These minor inconveniences; you can’t even apply for a job in person anymore. Nobody wants a resume given to them at a front desk. It’s intrusive; some asshole turned it around to a negative thing. Initiative, once thought of as a great virtue, is now considered a sin in business. Everything needing to be quickly planned in some agile environment; yet, they can’t even consider just letting someone drop off a piece of paper or two.

That builds more anxiety. I know these mangers are using software to search through tons of resumes. I think it’s despicable; letting a computer determine if a human is capable of doing a job. What a sick twist of irony; being a software developer.