Thursday, August 30, 2007

Change

Xmichra Answers

This was sent to Aunt Babz via email...

Hy Aunt B!

I hope you have time to read this!I guess my main issue is that i never get along with others in school and since September is just 2 days away,im already counting the hours to my doom.I really dont wan to go back.There is absolutely nothing that could convince me.Ive already changed school once because of i cant fit in and now im supposed to go to the 9th grade at the second school where my 6,7 and 8 grades werent that much fun!Its mainly my fault i cant get along with others that well.I'm just so shy and Mega shy!I just dont talk that much and when i do i wish i could be somewhere else.The damage it has brought to me is just too much to mend and i just dont know what to do.Believe,it is really hopeless!But there is one thing that i just dont like,sitting at home anymore either!But the main thing stopping me from going outside is that i dont like to hang around,i find it a huge waste of time.I like reading and developing my skills.I actually value education very much but im not willing to "pay the price" anymore for getting one in school!It would be my dream and my ambition to go to a school where i fit in and the teachers are always willing to help me learn more.But my parents arent that wealthy to send to private school or have private teachers.Im tired of being bored and 1 third of summer sitting home and plus,im tired of i cant just have it my way in life.

Thank you for reading this!

Helen.




Dear Helen,

School years are tough when you can’t seem to get a handle on your emotional self, and being shy is even tougher to get out of.

I am a very outspoken person, and have not personally had to deal with being shy… but my husband has. He is really shy, to the point that if I hadn’t asked him out way back when, well I bet the rest of our life wouldn’t have happened.

But when I was nervous to go into my ninth grade, that I can relate too. I was going to a whole new school surrounded by people I had no idea about and teachers and a school system that was VERY different from what I knew. I’m not going to lie, I was freaked out.. and that really affected my first semester to the point that I was failing school because I just didn’t feel that I fit in there.

For me, I had to really wrap my brain around three things :purpose, function and personality.

Purpose – School was and still is an important part of a persons life, and unless you are home schooled.. well most places here it is called truancy if you do not attend and your parents can be charged. Also, without a good high school grade you are looking at no college opportunities, and that can limit your future. The purpose of the schooling is to prepare you for life, and there is plenty of life past grade nine I promise.

Function – this was to daily function for me. How was I going to be able to function in school while feeling dysfunctional? I had to make myself participate is a few things (if you are shy you could sign up for the school paper, photography for the year book, or even a book club) and willingly smile at people and try my best to be friendly with people. Which was hard since I was a tough cookie.

Personality – finally, I stopped trying to ‘fit in’. I just stopped. I was me, and I liked me. It was others I had a problem with for the most part. So I would go my merry way into the classrooms and soon I had people talking to me that were really great people. When you stick to who you are and don’t pretend to be something else, you gain some very valuable friends that have very similar interests or persona's.

Hanging around out in the malls and what not IS a big waste of time. And some really enjoy doing that for down time. If you prefer to draw or write or read, take those tools with you. I never go anywhere without a book, a piece of paper and a pen to this very day… I just can’t be bothered with being bored.

If you have a problem talking with peers, I urge you to talk with the student councilor who might have some very sound tips for you to employ. Also, if you have a hard time talking in front of people… and this will be hard, but join a group like toastmasters where they actually coach people on how to talk intelligently and with purpose in front of others.

But ultimately this change has to come from you. You sound so desolate and set in the fact that things don’t change.. but they do all the time. And it is most often the changes that we make that make us happy. Don’t lose hope, and be the change that you want to see.


Aunt Babz said...


Read all the posts labeled with "Empowerment,"it just might help.

1 comment:

Crazy Mama said...

Oooh, I'm spending way to much time reading here, but this post actually made me sick to my stomach - it brought back memories in a BIG way. I was so shy in school that I'd be physically ill if I had to walk into class late. I was an oddball and was teased for being too smart, out of style, wearing glasses. It started getting somewhat better in high school - there, I was just ignored. I had one thing in my favor: My size. I'm 6' tall, and people equate big with "able to kick your ass if you mess with me". I got tired of being shy, though. I joined the drama club, volunteered in a local playhouse musical, and started doing two person improv. And then I figured out that I didn't need to TRY to get people to like me. Like Xmichra, I realized that I just had to BE. Just be me, and quit worrying about what other people were thinking about me. I'd smile and say hi to people whether we talked often or not. Even now, I still make a conscious decision to say 'hello' to people.

As for the hanging out, a suggestion or two: see if you could start an after school book discussion group. Check any local oddball papers or flyers (or der, online...I'll try to be somewhat modern here) that are published regularly for groups that are formed already. Y'know, the number one pick up line, and the number one conversation starter are both the same word: "Hello". "Nice weather we're having" come in a close second. It doesn't have to be much more complicated than that. Sometimes, you come across a person with whom you "click", and you won't feel like it's such a waste of time to have started with "hello".