Social Courage

in All Posts

How’s your day going? Mine is flying by, but I’m so busy and can’t seem to catch up on my work! Bletch! Typical Tuesday.

 

Mid-morning snack:  Pumpkin butter on WW toast.

CIMG2746

And "British" tea (English Breakfast with skim milk and Stevia).

CIMG2747

I made lunch while juggling a conference call and a deadline, so it wasn’t until I sat down I realized how brown it looked.

CIMG2748

Carrots, wild rice, and BBQ tofu.

CIMG2749

It was good, but as mentioned — it was lacking in leafy greens!  I had a Green Monster smoothie for my mid-afternoon snack to make up for it.

CIMG2750

My Green Monster contained: 1/2 cup skim milk, 1/2 cup NF plain yogurt, and a bunch (and I mean A BUNCH) of raw spinach.  Plus a few drops of Stevia to cut out the sour taste of the yogurt.  You should’ve seen the Husband’s face when I drank it! πŸ™‚

 

Social Courage

 

So… I’m kind of nervous for tonight!  I’m actually going on a "blind friend date."  One of the girls I met from the Orlando Women Runners club invited me out for drinks with her three other friends.  I’m really excited to go, but a little anxious, too.  I think this girl is SO SWEET to have invited me out — we only spoke for 15 minutes.

 

I’m always looking to expand my social circle, so I’m more than willing to take a few friendship leaps of faith!  I don’t think I’ll be doing any food/drink photography — it’s a little hard to explain food blogs to new people. 

 

When we first moved to Orlando, I begged and pleaded for the Husband to go to a runners’ club (not OWR) meeting with me, but he was too busy and couldn’t.  So… I decided to go by myself.  I am so embarrassed to admit this, but I drove up to the meet up location and saw all the people chatting like old pals and broke into tears in my car!  I freaked out and drove away.  It took me weeks to get up the courage to try another "social group," and that went horribly and left me in tears, too.  I refused to try anything new for like 6 months!

 

But, my social courage has really increased in the last year or so.  I think I finally realized that everyone is in the same boat — people want to meet new people and do stuff together.  Cliques are so high school.  Real adults aren’t like that.  I’m not saying everyone I meet is going to be my new BFF, but I like the opportunity to talk to someone new and learn about their lives.

 

What’s your social courage like?  What situations really test your courage?  What kind of social encounters come easy to you?

{ 76 comments }

 

  • Brandi March 10, 2009, 10:43 am

    yay for green monsters! I got a strange look from my husband this morning, too.

    I need more social courage! it’s hard finding couples our age that are in the same place we are (married and not crazy college kids) so we don’t have many friends we hang out with.

  • Jen March 10, 2009, 10:46 am

    I suck at social courage! I started going to this vegetarian potluck thing a few years ago, it was held once a month, and after only going twice I stopped going – everyone already seemed to know each other and I felt like a dorky kid in school! But good for you for trying again and I hope you have an excellent time tonight!

  • Run Saraah March 10, 2009, 10:47 am

    I am super nervous when it comes to meeting new people and large groups…but I am talkative and outgoing with my close friends. Its just hard for me to get that level of comfort as quickly as some others do.

  • Hallie March 10, 2009, 10:51 am

    I always get nervous in situations where I don’t know anyone, or I only know one person and they know everyone else. I think the standard “fake it til you make it” and a nice glass of wine does wonders…they don’t call it liquid courage for nothing!

    I joined a book club and we had our first meeting last night. I was nervous not only because I only knew one person, but also because I felt (self-imposed)pressure to talk about the book and sound smart. I ended up not really talking much during the book discussion, but I volunteered to host the meeting next month, so that’s a start!!

  • Meghann March 10, 2009, 10:51 am

    Awww.. Katie! You met me!!!! WE are two peas in a pod!

    I know what you mean about group things though, I have had mini panic attacks in my car trying to go to group things on my own. I think as I have gotten older I just have learned to be a little braver and take the risk of introducing myself to new people. It’s hard, but hey I met you!

  • Tami March 10, 2009, 10:56 am

    i couldn’t agree with you more and now i am becoming friends with my kids friends’ parents (one i really like) the other not so much πŸ™ it’s difficult.

    i have tried to get soem girlfriends at the gym i go to but i can’t bust down the wall, i have become friends with a few of the guys there and not that my husband cares but i would like a few more girlfriends…

  • FoodsThatFit March 10, 2009, 11:07 am

    I would say I am definitely more of an introvert and do get nervous meeting new people! However, as I have gotten older I have gotten more comfortable with myself and not as self-conscious and that seems to help. I think in the past what held me back was my own feelings of lacking confidence in myself and worrying too much about what others thought. I have found that keeping a kind and positive attitude radiates to others and they appreciate those attributes.

    Caitlin- I can’t wait to meet you and Meghan next month at the race. I feel like I have gotten to “know you” a bit through your blog and you have a kind heart! Have a fabulous day girlie!

  • thechiclife March 10, 2009, 11:11 am

    Aww…I probably would have driven off, too. Those kinds of things give me anxiety. I still don’t like going to events by myself or even restaurants for that matter! I really have to force myself to at least fake social courage for some things. But, I’m like you, I love meeting new people and making friends. πŸ™‚ Situations that really test my courage are those where there are lots of people and I don’t know a single person. It makes me feel like I’m in elementary school again and I’m the new girl all over. lol.

  • Runeatrepeat March 10, 2009, 11:12 am

    Good for you for putting yourself out there! The fiance and I talk about moving to a new place and I get super scared that I won't have any friends & no one will like me πŸ™

  • bb March 10, 2009, 11:14 am

    Good for you! You’ll have a great time, I’m sure. πŸ™‚

  • Amanda March 10, 2009, 11:19 am

    Tonight sounds really fun!! I think the thing that helps me the most in social situations is assuming that the other people there WANT to meet me, too! If this girl invited you, she’s obviously looking for more friends! Just think how fun it could be to introduce them to Meghann too, and you’d be expanding their circle even more πŸ™‚

  • lizzie March 10, 2009, 11:20 am

    I have friend date anxiety too. I played tennis with a “stranger” this past summer and no we have been hanging out in the winter until it gets warmer and I totoally got neverous about making small talk. The joke is, in the end it usually works out! Have fun!

  • Carlee March 10, 2009, 11:21 am

    I also need more social courage. I do a boot camp with a great group of woman, who I adore. In social situation with them, though, I am still not myself. It seems silly looking at my own behavior but while it’s happening…I can’t seem to change it.

  • Bec March 10, 2009, 11:22 am

    I’m not so good at social courage either, basically all my friends at school are from rowing and at home everyone knows everyone since kindergarten!

  • Becca March 10, 2009, 11:22 am

    I am extremely shy but am trying to work on it. I’m going to NYC to meet food bloggers for dinner this weekend and don’t know anyone! That’s huge for me.

  • Becca March 10, 2009, 11:24 am

    I am extremely shy but am trying to work on it. I’m going to NYC to meet food bloggers for dinner this weekend and don’t know anyone! That’s huge for me.

  • Texan Couture March 10, 2009, 11:40 am

    The BBQ tofu looks good. I am craving that now.

    My boyfriend moved to Austin in April, I moved in August after I graduated and we are still debating going to groups to meet people.

    It is boring doing things by ourselves all our real friends are 500 miles away except for David’s one friend that lives in Dallas, but still that is 3 hours away.

    The only people we know in Austin are our coworkers, which is why we are trying to find some type of group to join. I joined a sorority in college knowning no one there and that worked out well, it is how I met all my college friends but being older I find it scarier, I don’t know why?

  • Danielle March 10, 2009, 11:41 am

    I am totally with you with the lack of social courage. Good for you for getting out there now. I’m always so nervous, and I start to feel terrible anxiety especially as the time gets closer, I have to go to a bridal shower planning thing for my cousins shower but I don’t know any of the girls and I’m freaking out. I’ll just try to stay postive, and think about you going out with people you don’t know tonight!

  • ashley (sweetandnatural) March 10, 2009, 11:44 am

    New social scenes can be intimidating to try out alone! And this post is such coincidental timing b/c last night I had a blind friend date! A blog reader e-mailed me b/c she lives in the same city and wanted to meet up, so we met for coffee/tea last night. I don’t know if we’ll become BFFs, but it was fun to chat with someone new! And we strangley live 1 block from each other (in New York City!!!), so I’m sure I’ll see her again!

  • aron March 10, 2009, 11:51 am

    I am the same way… it took me a long time to venture out and meet new people after I moved to the bay area. Just this past year I have finally started to meet some new friends and its great. I am still super shy and get so nervous but I am getting better πŸ™‚

  • HangryPants March 10, 2009, 11:52 am

    I think it’s awesome you have a girl date! I am actually quite shy and really have never been the one in my group of friends to make plans or organize so it’s been really hard for me to make friends here in NJ. I tried more when I first got here, but I guess I got discouraged. I am doing Girls on the Run, which starts in a few weeks so I am hoping to make some nice running friends then.

    Have fun!

  • ksgoodeats March 10, 2009, 11:55 am

    The green monster smoothie reminds me of the St. Patty’s Day smoothies from McD’s!

    I used to have NO social courage whatsoever! However, like you one day something just clicked in my head and I realized that I was just being crazy! People WANT to make friends and get to know others who have similar interests. Confidence is key and it takes guts to just put yourself out there but it’s worth it in the end πŸ™‚

  • Colleen March 10, 2009, 11:56 am

    I think the blog world is inundated with shy people! I had a social gathering to go to with my husband last weekend and he told me I didn’t have to go – so I didn’t! I stayed at home and watched movies. I felt bad about not going, but not enough to bust out the anxiety and tag along.

  • mel h March 10, 2009, 12:06 pm

    I moved to Ohio by myself for law school while my whole family, my fiance, and all my friends live in KY still. I have made amazing friends here both in school and church b/c I just realized I have to be the one to speak up and say something!My fiance and I have also made friends to date with and it is so fun. Dont be scared, you can do it and it will be so worth it!1 Friends make everything better!

  • eatingRD March 10, 2009, 12:09 pm

    I tend to lean on the shy side ever since I was a kid. I don’t know what it is. But, I try my best! Did you get a new camera? Your pictures look really well focused and balanced. What kind of camera do you use?

  • teacherwoman March 10, 2009, 12:09 pm

    I absolutely love meeting new people, but it is hard at first. Last spring when I bought my road bike, I was super pumped to find that the cycling store had group rides, thus I was going to meet new people with similar interests! I was so nervous at first,but really enjoyed getting to know all those cyclists!!

  • Melissa March 10, 2009, 12:20 pm

    I have no social courage :-/. Heck, I fianlly worked up the courage to ask a girl at work today (that I have known for 6 years mind you) if her and her hubby wanted to hang out with me and mine sometime.

  • talesofexpansion March 10, 2009, 12:24 pm

    i’m lousy with social courage, too! i like to hang out by the buffet table :-P. i do find smaller groups much more manageable, and i bet your plans with the running club girls will be great because you already have a common interest. and they’d be so into the blog because it’s all about health! i’d bring the camera just in case it comes up and they want to get famous πŸ™‚

  • Leah March 10, 2009, 12:26 pm

    I have little to no social courage, to be honest. It doesn’t help that I live in a completely different country from all of my family/friends.. it sucks! I’m currently trying to expand my social circle though… by getting together with coworkers outside of work. This weekend I am going to a class at the gym with a girl from work..

  • Elina March 10, 2009, 12:29 pm

    I get nervous at stuff like that too. My strategy sometimes is to invite someone I know, so this way I have a familiar face and stuff to talk about. I’m sure you’ll do great tonight! She invited you so that means she liked you even from the 15 minutes that you spoke. Plus you have running in common. You’ll do great! I have no doubt.

  • Kath March 10, 2009, 12:33 pm

    For the first time since college we finally have a great group of friends (you need to meet them Caitlin!!!). But we met ALL of them through the blog!! At first I felt like I was cheating, but now they have turned into real life friends and we love hanging out together.

  • Caitlin at Healthy Tipping Point March 10, 2009, 12:35 pm

    eating rd – its a casio, it was muy cheap!

    kath – awww yay im going to steal your friends! or borrow them. πŸ™‚

  • tfh March 10, 2009, 12:36 pm

    Thank you SO much for sharing your story about your first experience attempting to go to a running club meeting. I am super shy and struggle with social events. But making new friends is so wonderful that it’s worth making the leap…have fun tonight!

  • greendogwine March 10, 2009, 12:40 pm

    I am totally the same way! I actually do fine in the social setting, but the time leading up to the event I DREAD!

  • Erin March 10, 2009, 12:42 pm

    I get scared not knowing anyone too! Good for you for stepping out of your comfort zone!

  • Yasmin March 10, 2009, 12:47 pm

    I like talking to strangers on the street. I like anonymity in it and you meet some interesting people. For me, because of my ED I have a hard time meeting with friends during meal times.

  • Hi! I'm Erin March 10, 2009, 12:49 pm

    I probably would have broken into tears, too!

    I always ALWAYS feel awkward at social gatherings where I don’t know anyone. I sort of stand on the edges, unsure how to break into a conversation, unsure of how to make small talk. However, I love it when people invite me places. Makes me feel less apprehensive if someone asked me to be there.

    My husband and I relocated to a new area last summer and it’s been tough finding people to do things with. Really tough.

    Finally, I’m not sure I could drink a spinach smoothie. Even with Stevia.

  • Sarah (lovINmytummy) March 10, 2009, 12:52 pm

    I hate parties where I don’t know anyone. Want to borrow my kids? They are great ice breakers.

  • audgepodge March 10, 2009, 12:53 pm

    AHHH… I can totally relate. I always tell people that I am horrible at going into situations where I’m the newbie and everyone else knows each other. I’ve been getting better over time. It makes me feel better to know I’m not alone! πŸ™‚

  • healthy ashley March 10, 2009, 1:08 pm

    Good luck with your date tonight! I can totally relate to the social courage issue. But you are fabulous and I have no doubt you’ll be best friends with all those girls by the end of the night!

  • Trish March 10, 2009, 1:10 pm

    oh I hate situations where I don’t know people. I tend to be bit shy and this makes it a million times worse. I am good one-on-one too, but groups always make me so nervous as well. Plus, it seems the older you are, the harder it can be to find new friends.

  • Christine March 10, 2009, 1:14 pm

    I got the social courage to meet with a group that was supposedly meeting at the nike store in Atlanta (just visiting for the month). I got the courage..showed up..and no one was there. I then decided to go off exploring on my own…saw a lady running…ran up to her and asked her if she wanted soeone to run with..she said no..

    Hows that for courage? haha

  • alessa March 10, 2009, 1:17 pm

    good for you for finally going to the women’s runners club! i havent had the courage to do anything like that.. you will have a great time tonight!

    it is definitely hard to meet people once you are out of college. most of my post college friends have been work people. its a whole new challenge!

  • Carolina John March 10, 2009, 1:20 pm

    it’s def harder to make new friends as an adult. i’m embarrased to admit that blogging has become my only social outlet now. it’s not a courage thing, more of a work from home and have 2 kids thing. i really wanted to go the bike club meeting last night, but gave the girls a bath instead.

    trust me, make some other newlywed friends now. you will end up having kids around the same time, and that’s when friends are priceless.

  • Haleigh March 10, 2009, 1:21 pm

    I just tried my first green monster about a week ago! I love them.. and I am horrible at social courage, I am pretty shy so it has always been quite difficult for me.

  • talieworld March 10, 2009, 1:27 pm

    Good luck tonight!

    I tell myself that afterliving on my own at 17 I shouldn’t be afraid to try anything. It is always easier to test things out in activities involving your interest because you already know you have something in common.

  • RunToFinish March 10, 2009, 1:35 pm

    Thanks for being so honest, I always think people are going to say I’m crazy for not just getting out there to find friends…but I do get nervous when everyone else already knows each other and they just talk to each other. You go girl and have a great time!

  • mehorsecrazy123 March 10, 2009, 1:35 pm

    While I rarely comment (but faithfully read) I thought I’d chime in on this one. Just last week I was on a Habitat for Humanity trip. While I had done this before it is always a bit awkward when you first meet a group of new people especially when you are spending 12 hours in a car! I am much much more outgoing than I used to be and I LOVE IT! While on my trip I struck up a conversation with many volunteers and got a better idea of their background–it was great! I say you just have to go for it. You will be glad you made the decision to step it up and engage in other social activities it can open so many doors! Good luck!!

  • Heather McD (Heather Eats Almond Butter) March 10, 2009, 1:36 pm

    Oh Caitlin, that surprises me that you used to get nervous about new social groups as you seem so sweet and outgoing. I know you will enjoy your blind friend date. Go out and have a fun night with the girls!

    Personally, I loved your brown lunch. πŸ™‚

  • Emily March 10, 2009, 1:40 pm

    Love your ‘mind the gap’ mug…where did you get it (if you don’t mind my asking)?

    It’s hard for me to meet new people, but I’m really working at it. I think you’re right, most of the time we’re all in the same boat, and we just need to get over ourselves and have courage!

    Good luck tonight! πŸ™‚

  • mehorsecrazy123 March 10, 2009, 1:41 pm

    While I rarely comment (but faithfully read) I thought I’d chime in on this one. Just last week I was on a Habitat for Humanity trip. While I had done this before it is always a bit awkward when you first meet a group of new people especially when you are spending 12 hours in a car! I am much much more outgoing than I used to be and I LOVE IT! While on my trip I struck up a conversation with many volunteers and got a better idea of their background–it was great! I say you just have to go for it. You will be glad you made the decision to step it up and engage in other social activities it can open so many doors! Good luck!!

  • Caitlin at Healthy Tipping Point March 10, 2009, 1:49 pm

    em – its from london, of course! my sister in law gave it to me for christmas.

    mehorsecrazy123 – thanks for commenting!!! and kudos for doing HFH.

  • MarleyR March 10, 2009, 1:52 pm

    I want to thank you for inspiring me to try to 30-day shred. I ordered it from Amazon yesterday so I will be starting soon. Regarding the weights, I was originally going to buy 5 lb weights to use with it but it sounds like maybe I should go with the 3 lb? I usually do some light(5 and 8 lb)free weight work in the gym – but this workout sounds pretty exhausting and I’m not sure I could do it with 5 lbs – especially if you had trouble at first. Thoughts? Thanks!!

  • Dori March 10, 2009, 1:54 pm

    I am not good with the social courage. In my house at college, I used to stay in my bedroom and wouldn’t even leave to go to the kitchen or the bathroom because it meant walking through the living room and I was too uncomfortable to deal with people. I need to get better at all things social.

  • Mrs. LC March 10, 2009, 1:55 pm

    aw remember our blind date?? πŸ™‚ Can’t wait to hear how tonight goes, they’ll love you, I’m sure!!

  • chandra March 10, 2009, 2:02 pm

    I'm always SO SHY meeting new people and so scared… even people I've known for awhile but haven't been around an awful lot I still feel all shy & awkward around!!

  • Caitlin at Healthy Tipping Point March 10, 2009, 2:04 pm

    MarleyR – yay for shredding! i think it is probably best to get a COMBO of weights, actually. i have 3 lbs but there are definitely a few of the exercises that i wish i had something heavier — but at the same time, there are many that i dont think i could do with anything heavier!! 3 lbs are a good place to start. shoot me an email if you want to join the shred challenge mailing list!

  • balancemycake March 10, 2009, 2:07 pm

    Aw Caitlin! I am EXACTLY the same way! I LOVE the friends I do have, but when it comes to making new ones…I love the idea of it (having new friends is so fun!) but actually doing it can be kinda hard. I always wonder how everyone’s going to think of me, if I’ll come on to strong or shy or whatever. I’m so happy for you that’s you’ve managed to conquer your fears! You aren’t alone!! πŸ™‚

    Michelle

  • kara March 10, 2009, 2:10 pm

    I remember when I started college I was petrified because I hadn’t had to make new friends in 13 years! Next year will be grad school and I’m already nervous about that too! You’re definitely not alone!

  • Anonymous March 10, 2009, 2:18 pm

    This may sound crazy, but since your ‘blind date’ is at night, have a small glass of wine before. It will take the edge off the situation and calm your nerves and then by next time you will be an old pro at it. I do not suggest drinking to cope with things but a little wine never hurt anyone =)

  • BOBBI McCORMICK March 10, 2009, 2:24 pm

    I am a socialaholic!!!! LOL…Sometimes it makes life a lot more fun, but also a lot more CRAZY! I always feel bad leaving others out, I want to include everyone!

  • Caitlin at Healthy Tipping Point March 10, 2009, 2:28 pm

    anon- that is awesome advice, trust me, i will!

  • Adi (oatonomy.com) March 10, 2009, 2:45 pm

    Great question Caitlin. My social courage has definitely increased in the last year or so. I was usually pretty introverted but found my self insituations where I was forced to be more outgoing. At first I found a bit uncomfortable, but when I realized I could be outgoing and still be ME, I started making so many new friends. When I think about over the last 8 months, I can’t believe how many true, genuine friends I have in my life now that weren’t there before. It’s been amazing! It just takes time.

  • Rachel S March 10, 2009, 2:54 pm

    I can totally relate to your “social courage” story! I am extremely shy and only feel truly comfortable around my closest friends. It’s difficult and awkward to meet new people. I guess I should try the “fake it til you make it” approach more often.

  • Lori March 10, 2009, 3:43 pm

    Most of my friends now are my husband’s friend’s wives!

    I feel like guys make friends a lot easier! What do you think?

  • Amanda (Two Boos Who Eat) March 10, 2009, 3:51 pm

    Have fun tonight. Andy and I are considering moving from L.A. to San Diego and I get so stressed out thinking about making new friends. UGH!

  • Oh She Glows March 10, 2009, 4:05 pm

    Love your green monster…I get the looks every morning…haha. BUt its funny to me.

    My social courage is hugely lacking because I have lots of anxiety. It is something I need to work on that is forsure. Thanks for being so honest now I know I am not alone!

  • Ava March 10, 2009, 4:15 pm

    I’m totally like that! I’ve always wished that I could just approach people and become best friends but it always freaked me out. I’ve always wanted to be a social person and love that my job forces me to do that. I became a financial advisor last year and have joined all sorts of networking groups and chambers of commerce to meet new people. The first event I went to.. I went with an equally as shy friend. We drank our wine, ate some snacks and stared as everyone else chatted and ran out as fast as we could and were SO embarrassed.

    It took a couple months but now I keep pushing myself with that same thought… they might not want to be my bff but hey how will I know whats out there till I try?

  • livelovelaugheatlearn March 10, 2009, 4:52 pm

    I am always afraid of social awkwardness, having there be a silence, or not knowing what to say, etc. so sometimes I’m even lacking in social courage with my friends. It’s last minute and I have no time to prepare myself mentally, I’ll make an excuse and won’t go. I’m getting better at it though. When I’m alone in a social situation where I don’t know people I rarely talk to anyone! That is for sure something I need to work on!

  • Leanne March 10, 2009, 5:00 pm

    I had a green smoothie today too! I’m sold.

    Social courage will be put to the ultimate test when I move to Colorado in the fall… Yikes!

  • RhodeyGirl/Sabrina March 10, 2009, 5:06 pm

    oh no!!!! i am sure it will be SO MUCH FUN caitlin! have fun!!!

  • sloank March 10, 2009, 5:40 pm

    I really like your take on social courage and how upfront you are with it! I’m sort of in the same boat… I’m in grad school and at a new job so I’m trying to make some new friends. Just last weekend I got up the courage to go out with a friend from class and her friends. And it was worth it! I was very nervous myself but it was great to feel like I made some new girlfriends!! Hopefully I’ll keep working at it!

  • runjen March 10, 2009, 5:49 pm

    Oddly, I have gotten worse with my social courage over the years. It is something that I am working on. I have been trying to find a running club that I click with here in Columbus with no such luck. That is fabulous that you found such a good one!

  • lucy March 10, 2009, 6:38 pm

    ahh, i am glad you posted this. my bf and i moved to a new city (boston) and have had a hard time making couples friends and on our own.

    It’s been hard for my to say “yes” to invitations I may have declined when I was surrounded by a big group of girls, but it always does feel better in the end.

  • Caitlin at Healthy Tipping Point March 10, 2009, 7:02 pm

    lori – i do think men have it easier, because they don’t judge as much. πŸ™‚

  • Maris March 11, 2009, 9:38 pm

    Caitlin I just started reading your blog and I agree with you on social courage. I wish I coul dget up the nerve to do Meetup.com etc – it’s always nice to meet new people!

Previous post:

Next post:

Healthy Tipping Point