I am a Social Butterfly

Never thought I would say that, ever. I am quite the hermit and quite content to be so. In fact, The Oatmeal drew a comic about me (allow me this dream!)

My colleague dragged me to a Girl Gone International event. She is social in a way I will never be but I felt obliged to give her company. I am not one of those women who bitch about how hanging out or working with a group of women is a nightmare. Quite the contrary, I had worked with a bunch of women in my previous office and I grew to love every one of them. So while I wasn’t afraid of making friends the way she was, I was a bit apprehensive about putting myself out there. The night went well enough. I clicked with two other ladies (an Australian and an American) and since they were both married, gave me a chance to see them again via the age old ‘triple date’ phenomenon. We met them a few times for dinner and it wasn’t the nightmare that I thought it would be.

Cut to a few months, I volunteered to go to another meetup. This time there was free alcohol and my brother’s girlfriend was visiting. You see how this works?

Lesson 1: I need multiple compelling reasons to actually go out somewhere social. I don’t mean travel, I love travelling. I mean the act of actually making an effort and talking. I am very good at it. But it tires me out like no physical activity can.

The night was a success on her part – she made ‘connections’. It was a success on my part because I didn’t spend a dime (when you suddenly find yourself supporting 3 people on one income, you find yourself feeling more stingy than you actually are). There’s even photo evidence that I hung out with a big group of brave and interesting women of all age groups from all over the world and had fun.

Bangkok Girl Gone International
Spot me!

Lesson 2: It doesn’t literally kill me to be social but I am yet to find a compelling reason to push myself to it. I’m not the kind to want empathy or the kind to share deep secrets. I do talk to a select few people who’ve caught my interest and whom I think would help me see a different perspective on life. I am sometimes have blinders on so I like having people around who are polar opposites to me in many ways and in many ways the same and yet with a different set of priorities.

Lesson 3: I am more convinced than ever that I am an introvert. Not to be mistaken by its identical twin, shyness. I am not shy, I just find I expend a lot of energy when it comes to talking to people and hanging out with them. I often find I need a couple of weeks to recover.

The Hive, Bangkok
Beautiful meetup locations

Lesson 4: I actually enjoyed the idea of Meetups. Apparently they exist all over the world and they help you participate in interesting activities in a group and there is absolutely no pressure to meet up again. While I am not a big fan of ‘girl only’ or ‘boys only’ meetups, I do love the other activities that come up. You can go volunteer for the weekend, you can participate in workshops, you can play tarot as cards and not the future prediction thing. In fact, the boy and I went to a brilliant Open Air Cinema and watched the Rocky Horror Show! It was amazing.

Open Air Cinema Bangkok

Lesson 5: I am still learning about myself but there is something about being abroad that accelerates the rate of learning.

I am curious to hear your thoughts about going out and meeting other people. Is it something you like to do? If you are self-sufficient, do you even bother? Leave a comment!

11 thoughts on “I am a Social Butterfly

  1. It’s funny how being abroad makes so many things more easy or quicker. I remember that from studying abroad. I did things there I probably wouldn’t have back home. Also, am not a social butterfly though I was at a work fair the other day and it was weird how easy it was to make small talk with different vendors there. Work in general has proven to me that I can deal with people.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. An exciting post (if I understood everything).
    I think every human being has an introverted and extroverted side. And if he is well practiced, he uses them skillfully.
    I need time to get to know and to move freely, which is certainly also a result of my upbringing (be careful that you do nothing wrong). I can be quite easy but then, being a part of me will always remain closed. I like going to concerts, and often alone, sometimes even to the movies, because I can be me.
    Maybe also because I rarely have moments when I do not have anyone around me. My hobbies: long-distance running (alone) and look at night stars (alone).
    And then blogging, as a social network at a safe distance.
    For you a beautiful evening.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Some people are naturally reserved, while others actually feel uncomfortable not surrounded by a crowd and mixing in. Is forcing oneself to become one or the other a good thing, or should one go with what one is comfortable with?
    Are you in the fourth seat on the right? I am not good at recognition.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I never could reach a conclusion on whether one should go with ones comfort or push oneself out of their comfort zone. I know what my answer to that is in terms of travel and work challenges. But not in terms of socialising. What do you think? I am the one 2nd one on the left, with the white trousers!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Well, you do look happily extrovert there!
        Comfort or effort – all a question of the occasion and reaching a happy medium, I suppose. Sometimes it is worth the effort to hold back a little when one wants to push forward, or vice versa, where that is simply the best course at the time.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. I love going out and meeting new people but I am such a sloth it gets hard for me to go out these days since I have long job hours and when I am free no one else is free! :/ 😦 You go girl, have a lot of fun and enjoy life ^.^

    Like

  5. I, too, am an introvert, so when I moved to Seattle I had a hard time making friends. Meetup groups helped with that quite a bit. I’ve made several friends that way. But socializing sucks the life out of me, so I find that lately I’m more content at home. Sometimes I have to remind myself that there’s absolutely no reason to feel guilty about that.

    Liked by 1 person

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