Blogger, influencer, whatever you want to call it. I am just starting out and as a teacher, the only people I can legitimately claim to have “influenced,” were required by law to listen to what I had to say. Worry is an overstatement but I wonder, if it’s possible to do this a different way. Here are three reasons why I struggle:
I am an introvert.
If you want to get even more specific, I am an INFJ (Introverted, Intuitive, Feeling, Judging). You can read more about this (and more) personality types here. There are a lot of misconceptions surrounding introversion. We are not necessarily shy and don’t always have terrible social skills. In fact, we can be quite dynamic and charming. It’s the small talk that is wearisome and a general dislike for other people. But that’s not quite true either. Sometimes I like people. I like genuine interactions with individuals that allow me to express my passion or discuss ideas that have true value. At parties or other large gatherings, I am a bit odd. I am better one-on-one. The chances that you get to meet me, the real me though are slim because I am reticent about revealing myself to others.
I don’t want to do this in a conventional way.
In complete INFJ fashion, I strive to create something that makes the world better and once I get an idea in my head, it’s really hard for me to let it go. I want to be able to write about, discuss, and create around the topics that are of interest to me. Some might call me unyielding. Truth be told, I’m not often willing to compromise if I don’t believe that something is authentic or adds value to my weltanschauung (worldview). I am willing to lose before I sacrifice my principles and it can be hard to change my mind.
I never take my phone or camera with me anywhere.
It’s actually kind of annoying. Well, not to me. I like it that way. I have almost no pictures of myself. My camera roll is filled with images of my children and they are not for sale. I guess you can say that I am more focused on living my life rather than documenting it. Along these same lines, my life can actually be pretty mundane at times. Yes, I do travel a lot. Yes, I do live in a foreign country. Yes, I do like food, beauty, and fashion. But, what about all the other parts of life that are not on display? The real parts? I think those not only matter too, but those are the parts that matter period.
Despite my preoccupations, I have to believe that it is possible. I believe that it is possible to do this and be me. I created Womanalia as a space for me and others who might feel the same. I reflected on my particular skillset, the needs of my family and friends and sought to conceive a better way of doing things. I believe that assembling a variety of narratives, even (and especially) one’s that differ from my own is powerful enough. I don’t need or want to be on display. In fact, letting you in now feels wholly uncomfortable and causes me great anxiety. I want to lift up the voices of the women in my life and explore what really matters to each of us. I believe that our stories and the written word are enough because our stories are who we are. I believe that the promise of genuine and meaningful connection is what truly drives us. I believe that we can create it even if I make a terrible “influencer.” I’m not here to change you; I want us to be changemakers. I want us to be real. And in case you were worried, there is one thing I am really good at: being alone, together.
I’m not here to change you; I want us to be changemakers. I want us to be real.Tweet