I was visiting with a friend the other day and as we sipped our americanos and caught up on each others lives, my friend shared that she was feeling exasperated with one of her colleagues. This woman is apparently very sweet with a kind heart but tends to be overly exhausting and my dear friend was struggling. “She just has no clue! It’s like she is oblivious to her behaviour!” As I nodded sympathetically and offered helpful suggestions as to how my friend might handle her colleagues’ antics, I couldn’t help but wonder … how do people perceive me?
Am I someone who people enjoy for a short time but then breathe a sigh of relief when I leave the room? Or am I (as I like to think) easy-going and effortless to be around? Am I completely oblivious to how my behaviour and energy impacts others? Or am I self-aware and conscious of social cues?
Well, if you know me, you are already rolling your eyes at this blog post … and if you don’t know me, the answers to the above questions are (in order) OCCASIONALLY, RARELY, SOMETIMES, and A LITTLE BIT.
And let me tell you, thank goodness for that little bit of social awareness because if not for that, I might be a real nightmare!
The bottom line is, I am fully aware that I am sometimes high-maintenance or ‘work’ to be friends with. Like on a scale of 1-10 of friendship (1 being someone who is easy peasy and 10 being a Monica Gellar vibe) … I feel like I’m a solid 7. Maybe a 6 and a half.
Now I have nothing against Monica Gellar and I’m not writing this to get a bunch of praise or arguments … “Christine, don’t be silly! You are a great friend!”
Trust me, I am equally aware that I am a good friend too. I am energetic, trustworthy, and entertaining. I am always up for fun and your mom will love me. You can tell me almost anything without me even blinking an eye and I am loyal AF.
But I would be lying if I said that being my friend is a breeze. I can be loud, overly exuberant, hyperactive, moody, and anxious. I can be demanding, inappropriate, and I need constant reassurance. I will relentlessly ask your advice even though I have already fully made up my mind about what I am going to do (otherwise known as an ‘askhole’) and I always seem to be generating chaos around me. I’m not so much breezy as I am tropical stormy.
Oh yea, I am also dramatic and ‘overly expressive’. Now I’ve never really considered my expressive nature to be a negative thing. In fact, I have always prided myself on having exceptional non-verbal communication skills (you will ALWAYS know how I am feeling), but the other day one of my co-workers said to me “It’s amazing, you can whine without actually saying anything. It is like your whole body is whining.” so I’ve since realized that perhaps it is possible to exude a little too much in the emotion department.
Points for being fairly self-aware?!
Anyway, the whole situation really got me thinking … it is a weird balance between loving and accepting who you are but also trying not to be a complete oblivious asshole.
I am always going to be excitable, anxious, and need reassurance. I am always going to ask your advice and then do whatever the hell I want anyway. But it’s also not going to hurt if I try to be a little more mindful of my surroundings … and keep my non-verbal whining to a minimum.
Friends wouldn’t have been Friends without Monica. In all reality, she’s pretty cool. And thankfully she had all of the other characters to keep her balanced and in check. So to my crew, thanks for keeping me in check and loving all of me, even when things get stormy.