The Awkward Adventurer
Kindergarten, first year of middle school, freshman year, freshman year again, first year in a new town… all uncomfortable, trying experiences, and, if you are like me, undeniably awkward. I stumbled upon a conversation last week about how long it takes to feel really successful in a place. I mean successful in the low chance of making a fool of myself, high chance of appearing competent way. The conclusion—two years.
Yes, two years until you really have it figured out. Think about it… second grade was awesome. Fifth grade was rock star level. Junior and senior years of high school and college? You were so good it hurt.
The issue comes from my twenty-something need to experience the world and my human need not to be uncomfortable. Being adventurous is wonderful, but it comes with moving on to new adventures and therefore creates, the awkward adventurer. Once I get good at my current situation, it’s time to move on to the next unknown, probably awkward, one.
In order to experience the world, though, I have to risk the awkward years. It’s a deal I’m willing to make. I just need to remember what I knew in kindergarten—put your comfort blanket in your backpack, hold your head high, and ask “will you be my friend?”
It will all get easier soon.
(Photo courtesy of Lisa Norwood via Flickr)