21:29

As someone who is more on the introverted side of the introvert/extrovert scale, I am always looking for ways in which I can feel more comfortable in the general public. While I can walk down a busy street without feeling anxiety, I often have panicky feelings or pangs of social awkwardness when faced with crowds (both strangers and people I know).

When faced with a situation in which I have to speak to an acquaintance, I tend to stay quite quiet and avoid making conversation where possible. I am not a fan of small talk! On Monday mornings I seldom ask colleagues how their weekends went (not out of rudeness but out of a slight feeling of uncomfortableness). I think that this sometimes stems from my weekend habits. On Sundays I tend to take the day to recharge my batteries and have some alone time. Come Monday morning; the loud dynamics of colleagues chatting is sometimes difficult to emulate. I work hardest when it is quiet and peaceful; however office etiquette calls for bonding with colleagues and sharing interests. With a naturally quiet character it can sometimes be difficult to interact with those who have a much louder personality.

Recently in a monthly meeting with my team leader, she told me of an observation she had made of my character. She noticed that I had been more open and vocal, engaging in more conversations with colleagues and generally having a more outgoing demeanour. She seemed pretty pleased that I was engaging with my colleagues more (not that I was ever a completely silent worker), and that I seemed happier as of late. I had not actively changed my behaviour in the past month so it was strange yet satisfying to hear this observation from a colleague. I am pleased to realise that my comfort levels in interacting with others has increased (if only a little), and that I don’t give off a socially awkward vibe (as much as I think I do). Sometimes all an introvert needs is the quiet reassurance that they are doing okay.

23:06

Today I went to donate blood and there I met a nurse who was so friendly that I could not help but write a blog post about it.

I try and donate blood every 12 weeks because I feel like I should give to the community in any way I can. Also I feel like if I should ever need a blood transfusion, someone elses’ blood could save me, thus I need to give someone else that same opportunity. I have been giving blood ever since I became eligible to, and I find it quite relaxing to do so.

The nurse that accompanied me during my blood donation was so friendly and pleasant to talk to. She asked me what I studied and the general small talk questions, but took a step further and took a real interest in my degree. She shared information about herself and her own experiences in relation to my field of study, and I found it very interesting to talk to her. We spoke about a certain forensic pathologist based in the Edinburgh area who occasionally gives lectures in the hospital. She kindly wrote me a note with all the information on so I could research it more for myself. She also wished me the best of luck in my studies.

A further thought was that while it was clearly coming to the end of the nurse’s shift, she did not rush through the donation etc but took the time to talk to me. Her genuine interest in what I did as a student was refreshing and it made me feel good. It is not often that people take a deep rooted interest, even my own friends do not, let alone a stranger!