I was emailing a fellow author yesterday, and found myself writing, “I’m better with forms than I’m with people.”
Sad as it is, it’s true. And it’s not just forms; I love lists and spreadsheets. They’re so structured, and usually, once you figure out what you want done, there are only a few specific steps to follow.
I’m good with steps.
People aren’t the same. They’re unstructured, and they’re messy and emotional, and I’m never sure the step I may choose to take at any specific time won’t land me in a puddle. I’m always worried people won’t get that I’m joking; or that I’ll say the wrong thing and offend someone; or that my saying, “I can’t do this. It’s too hard for me,” will make them not want to talk to me anymore.
It’s exhausting, and doubly so with people I talk to on-line. You may think it’s because tone doesn’t carry over the Internet, but that’s not the main reason. In my everyday life, I solve my issues by not talking to people I don’t feel on the same wavelength with. I don’t engage unless I know I’ll connect. On line, I’m already surrounded by people I like, and I can’t just not engage with them, so I need to be extra careful.
Hence, forms. Instead of emailing people and asking for their help (aka. running the risk of rejection) I make forms and put them out there, and if nobody signs up, I can say they didn’t see them.
I don’t know when this post turned into psychotherapy, but the point is if I’m talking to you on-line, you’re important to me. Thank you for being my friends.