Friday, January 27, 2012

Oh Change, and fears, and challenges and amazingness

Like many a person, I'm not very good at handling change or starting new routines.  In fact, I'm terrible at it.

So starting a new job is the ultimate test of my will power - and it goes without saying that a. the new job is awesome and b. that in three months I'm going to be all "why was I so afraid of these things I do every day? Easy peasy."

But right now the change in my routine seems the most overwhelming. You see, I'm a introvert in a big way.  I read the most incredible explanation of introvert v. extravert on someone's blog (I thought it was at my friend Ruby's blog but when I went back to find today I couldn't find it. Boo!).

It's not that I can't handle social situations, but that I have a finite well of social situation tolerance and to fill that well back up again, I desperately need time by myself.  It just so happens that my social situation tolerance level (what I just made up scientifically deem as SST) is much lower than the average person's.

And starting a new job, this is what scares me the most. I feel the well draining as I enter more and more social engagements that I don't wish to cancel (like going away to visit Inspector Climate's family this weekend) and I can't help but worry that I'll never be able to replenish it again.

I don't want anyone to get the wrong idea either - I'm so grateful for this job, so grateful that I think I'm going to adore the people I work with, and grateful that I'll love the work and am so incredibly passionate about it too.

I'm even grateful for the change, and just have to keep reminding myself that I'm good at a lot of things, but gracefully leaping from one thing to the next is not one of them. And that's ok. What would be the fun in being graceful all the time? It's the bumps and bruises that are real conversation starters.

And so, if you need me, I'll be sitting quietly by myself, replenishing my well of SST.


  1. oh I wish you the best of luck! I, too, have a surprisingly low SST level ;) you'll be fine - be brave! big breaths!

  2. I totally understand. I was in Las Vegas for four days recently at an event that was work related. While it was nice to meet people I had only communicated with online, by the end of it I was exhausted both emotionally and physically...from being social. I need to replenish my well of SST daily (love that, by the way!), and when I don't I get physically run down.
    Enjoy all of these new things in your life...and be sure to take good care of yourself as you settle in to all of this good stuff! :)

  3. I definitely have a low SST (great term) also, and it can really make it hard for me to even want to set foot in my office some days because people will want to talk to me! However at the same time I try to remember how hurt I'd be if they didn't want to talk to me, so I keep trying. That's great that you're so excited about your new job though :)

  4. I love your description - SST. Your mention of a great introvert vs. extrovert post reminded me of one I read a while ago too. It's probably not the same one but I had never truly understood the difference before reading this:

    Good luck with the new job! I hate starting a new one & not just knowing how to do everything already. You'll get through it! :o)

  5. "a finite well of social situation tolerance"

    well put!

    and i've been visiting (and staying with) the in-laws for 5 weeks, and 2 to go! so you get where i'm at right now huh? lol

  6. i always get nervous starting a new job, especially meeting new people. i find though that once you get through that first day, it's all easy from there. plus half the anxiety is usually just the lead up to your first day, not the day itself.
    you'll do great, i'm sure of it!

  7. Change freaks me out. I don't handle it well. At all.
    Twitter: @GlamKitten88

  8. Riiiiiiiiiiight there with you. Except, you know, I'm still unemployed... And I'm officially going to start using "No, I'm sorry, I have to recharge my SST" as an excuse for getting out of things I don't particularly want to do. GENIUS!!

  9. You will be great, and I'm sure your concern will flip 180 degrees once you meet a few nice, fun colleagues. This is a new opportunity for friends, experience, and life! Just keep that chin up.

    P.S. Worst case scenario, perhaps you can use your scientific skills (SST, totally real!) and crack the mysteries of our universe as a recluse in your lab/kitchen.

  10. That's why the world has annoying uber-extroverts like me - we suck up a lot of the social air to save you sweet introverts!

  11. Good luck with the new job :)

  12. I definitely identify with this a lot. I think it will get easier as you get used to it. I know you are going to be great at your new job and hopefully this will help a lot. xoxo

  13. I had similar feelings when I changed job six months ago. I was focused on the work, but was stressed by the fact that part of getting to know the team is connecting at some level beyond the workplace personalities.
    It is difficult to let my work colleagues get to know me better and end up focusing on learning about them than disclosing much about myself. It is easier that way :) Hopefully you will find some ease in adjusting to your new space!

    Thanks again for the visit to my blog!

  14. The transition is definitely the hard part, letting your body, mentally and physically, get used to new demands and schedules. I hope it all goes smoothly!

  15. You sound like a gal close to my heart - I ALSO need lots of alone time. I get very anxious if I have to be out in too many social situations and am definitely an introvert.

  16. New jobs are like being the new kid at school & having to figure out the whole "who do I sit with in the cafeteria?"

    Good luck! You'll be great! 😊

  17. I'm not too good with change either (probably why I stayed in a job I hated for so long because it was familiar) but you know over time things become more of a routine.

    In three months time I'm sure you will be enjoying your job more. And the people you work with.

  18. I'm exactly the same way. I enjoy social interactions, but I don't feel recharged by them. They are draining and I need alone time to recover. I also am incredibly daunted by change, and the feeling of not being in control. I hope the new job goes really well!

  19. I definitely get the SST! This fellow introvert had a wicked busy week, having to be "on" at work for 3 presentations. I worked late one night. I had two late social nights. And while I'm glad to have a job and friends (!!!), I was feeling worn out by yesterday and desperately need a recharge. I interpret Myers-Briggs results for students, which is always a good reminder of what I need as an introvert.

    Good luck and KICK BUTT chica. You'll find your time to rest and recharge!

  20. Deidre - the explanation is on my blog. It's in the comments on my 11 things post.

  21. Oh and CONGRATS!!!! on the new job. You will rock it.

  22. Starting a new job can be daunting for sure! But I'm very pretty you will settle in just fine. Good luck with the job and have fun!

  23. Oh I hear you on the SST. Since living in France, it's gone down to almost 0. I find having a dog is a great excuse to get out of any social situation I need to..."oh I'm sorry but I have to run. Gotta take the dog out!"

    Hope the new job is going well so far. So exciting!

  24. Jo - YES! When I am mentally exhausted (usually from SST) my physical body goes to pieces too!

    Lozz123 - I tend to be able to put on a brave face in public, but then I lose it at home.

    Mrs C - That is a great post! But definitely not where I found it.

    Monica - Thank you! That was me putting my physics degree to good use!

    SJ - Yes, new jobs are always nerve wracking.

    Bonnie - RIGHT!? Me neither.

    Melbourne on my mind - YES. Please do use that as an excuse, the sooner it gets more socially acceptable the better.

    Postgradagenda - SST is real? Well, jeez. Who knew I was so damn clever?

    The Zadge - Perfect balance!

    Azra - Thank you!

    Teachergirl blogs - The job will be great, especially as I get used to it. But the social aspect is still hard for me.

    Elisse - Ahh, interesting idea.

    E - Thank you!

    Prixie - Soul mates!

    Yours Truly, Melissa - Yes, totally a bit of "who do I sit with" which is just the worst feeling in the world.

    Gracie - Yeah, this has nothing to do with my job, but just the change from being unemployed and getting plenty of alone time and being employed and getting not enough,.

    Angela - yes! Exactly.

    Heather - ACK! that would be so hard for me.

    Ruby - I KNEW it was your blog! Thanks for the link!

    Trishie - Thank you!

    Crystal - Awesome. Just another reason I need to get a puppy ASAP :) The list is long.

  25. No I totally get you on this one. Starting a new job or being in a new setting is always nerveracking and stressful yet good at the same time. Just remember, you just have to get through the beginning.