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Beyond the Comfort Zone

Took a coaching/mentoring/precepting workshop at work today. It was a class comprised of roughly 25 “students” of multiple disciplines (LPN, MD/DO, Social Work, RN, Pharm.D, dietician, etc.) and involved a mix of didactic teaching off of PowerPoint slides and working in small groups to practice the concepts learned.
I felt slight social anxiety during the discussions in the small groups with strangers.  Which was funny to me because I feel that as I’ve grown older, I have grown more comfortable with speaking with strangers. And certainly so after having had to do so many presentations and even teach. However, I realized this social anxiety stemmed from being an introvert, where I prefer to take the time to reflect upon the questions in the group activity beforehand vs. being thrown in to answer and discuss on the spot. You’re an introvert, too. Do you also have that issue?The bus and Max ride home today for me was quite unnerving. The lady sitting immediately in front of me was sharing with her girlfriend about how a bunch of her guy friends jumped her stupid man, how her loser man got a girl pregnant who tried to ask her for money and she knew her man was a loser when he told his baby mama to go to his woman (her) to ask for money, and how she’s a hard worker because she works and saves money and is in a middle of lawsuits (one suing a business for her fall), and how she lost this lawsuit on Judge Judy and beat up “the bitch” when they returned home for making her look like a fool on that show. (I was just hoping she wouldn’t suddenly turn her attention on me and find a reason to sue me). And the man standing a foot in front me on the sardine-can-like crowded max following the max ride kept talking to himself, including muttering things like “die!” (I was just hoping he wasn’t talking to me). Let’s just say I thanked the universe when I made it to my destination safely.

Update: 

My day of meeting interesting people was apparently not over by the time I wrote this original entry. I was chilling at the wine bar at the local MoC given husband was going to be late in picking me up due to a late scheduled meeting. And in comes a man pushing a walker to the wine/beer bar of the grocery store. Being that I work in the medical field with many patients that fit his demographic, it was difficult for me not to pay attention to him and want to help him. In the end, this elderly man who could only say “yes” and”no” due to the aphasia from a stroke and his friend Buzz, who ironically ordered non-alcoholic beer, and also suffered aphasia, although less severe where he still encompassed a big vocabulary but just spoke slowly, engaged in a very pleasant conversation with me. They both met due to their aphasia that was a consequence of a stroke (coincidentally, I work in a clinic that manages medications to try to prevent/reduce strokes). Buzz did most of the talking because his friend, who could only say “yes” (and as I found out later “no”, too, but he only said “yes” to me) was limited in his vocabulary. However, I quickly found it through our interactions. that Mr. “Yes” was very sharp with his iPhone and quick response to my sarcastic jokes. I don’t think they’re any of my patients but it was so close to “home” (work) and eye-opening. They reminded me why I care so much about doing good in my job and turned my crazy day into one that ended with a highly positive note. 

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