Welcome to the thirty-ninth post of the Great Writing Challenge of 2012.
Five days a week for six months, I will be given a topic to write about. The stipulation: it must be 250 words (or more), and positive in tone. If you would like to suggest topics for me to write about, please email me at TheRebeccaProject [at] gmail [dot] com.
The Great Writing Challenge 2012 has already been a great opportunity to stretch my creative muscles, and I am grateful for your feedback and your support. And so I want to pay it forward. My friend, Carolyn, has set herself a challenge of a different kind, and I wanted to share it with you.
Each weekend, Carolyn has set herself a goal of doing one thing she has not done/gone to/experienced before in the ‘Stop Procrastinating’ Challenge (alternatively called the ‘Get Off Your Damn Ass and Do Things’ Challenge). There’s so many cool things to do in this city, but it’s so easy to let inertia take over. So each weekend, she’s going to be out, trying something new and meeting new people. And I say good for her!
As expats, we tend to have a much smaller circle, particularly if you gravitate to other expats. If you stick around in a particular place long enough, your social circle gets smaller and smaller as many of the expats either move home or move on to the next adventure. It’s the nature of the beast: it’s quite a transitory existence, but that’s also be part of the appeal.
Social anxiety is something that so many of us can relate to and it’s so much easier to not put yourself out there. But doing new things and meeting new people is cool, even if it’s a little unsettling at first. There’s so much about our existence in modern cities that serves to alienate us from our fellow twenty-and-thirty-somethings. We’re great at interacting online, but not in the flesh. I really haven’t met too many people here, but keeping up with my German classes has helped. I am getting a lot more comfortable with actively engaging with people, even in a language I’m not too good at.
What are we all searching for? Probably just people to share parts of our lives with. A beer, a play, a hike. Hear their stories and thoughts, and have a chance to share ours. Interaction and acknowledgement.
I think Carolyn’s brave to set herself this challenge that’s outside of her comfort zone, and I know I’m looking forward to doing some of the new stuff with her and reading her wrap ups on her blog, [Insert Cool Name Here].