The Labyrinth Guards
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And now, the meat of this post:
I'm the worst at sharing something about me. When asked a direct question, I deflect, subvert, or block. Sometimes all three in the same sentence. You want personal disclosure in a verbal conversation? Probably not going to happen unless I know and trust you already. Even then, it's hard. My instincts are to protect myself, get attention off myself, and avoid confrontation in any way possible. It's like I have three labyrinth guards dictating what comes out my mouth. One only tells the truth, one only lies, and one gets stabby when strangers ask questions.
I've been tossing around the idea of making a podcast, but then I realize how stupid that would be. I'll come across as disingenuous and lose my audience. Except...I'm also toying with the idea of public appearances and allowing question and answer time afterward. I'm so fucked.
I'm in Toastmasters to improve both public and conversational speaking. My best speeches have been other people's words and life experiences. When I talk about me, I have to write it out word-for-word first, so I stick to the facts. The nice thing about Toastmasters is nobody's fact-checking us, but that doesn't stop me from beating myself up if I say the wrong thing.
All this to say: If I've shut you down or flat-out lied to you in person, know that nobody hates me more than I hate myself. It's hard to undo over forty years of conditioning: Nothing about me is important, anyway, so why would you want to know?