What I learned from our first Candlelit Sunday Chat
(including lots of advice on social anxiety, holiday parties, and more)
Please remember that we offer partial & full scholarships to the Quiet Life; no one should decline to participate for lack of funds! If times are tough, just email us, at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also support our work by donating a scholarship:
Oh there is so much to say about the first Sunday candlelight chat, that we held a few days ago.
That you’re an extraordinary group of people: thoughtful, deep, and warm.
That it was possible, even via Zoom, to spend a truly intimate hour together. (One of you called it “a beautiful space of belonging.”)
That we had a perfect balance of people quietly listening vs. participating via written comments vs. “raising hands” to speak.
That you came from all over the world. (As one of you put it, “I love that this community is global.... a golden thread connecting us all over the world.....and a mixture of ages, genders, ethnicities.”)
That we should do this again: “I’d do this again in a heartbeat,” you said. “This was a beautiful way to spend my Sunday.” “Please do this again.”
And so, we will. We have some great Sunday chats planned, including with some special guests… to be announced! Please stay tuned for details.
In the meantime, here’s a clip from our chat. We’ll also send the full recording in a few days. (It takes us some time to pull it together.)
(Please note: to participate in these chats, and to receive the full recordings, you must be a paid or scholarship subscriber.)
It’s also true, as I mentioned at the start, that I was pretty nervous! After all my years as a public speaker, I’m “de-sensitized” by now to many forms of stage fright. But, as a shy person, it never truly goes away. And it often flares up when I’m doing something new - like gathering you from all over the world for a heartfelt discussion.
Which led to many of you sharing your thoughts and advice on how you handle things like stage fright, social anxiety, holiday parties, and so on. Here’s a curated collection of your excellent insights and advice:
I try to re-label my anxiety when I speak...it's just energy and means I CARE
I become more anxious the more I care about what I am presenting.
Sometimes, I’ve experienced that fear was actually an indicator that an action was very important/ worth doing - especially because it was challenging
I always feel anxious when I am invited to a public event but sometimes when I push myself to attend, I end up having a good time. I think introverts sometimes need to push themselves to get out to go have fun and you do end up having fun. Not always though - sometimes.
Always drive your own car to events, including family gatherings so you can leave when you want. Also, don't park in a driveway because someone will park behind you and delay your getaway!
I think of going to some things as going to a foreign land. I speak their language for a bit, perhaps find someone from my own land (the land of introversion), and then take myself home when enough is enough.
One thing that helps me at parties is to find someone who isn't talking to someone and asking them questions or relating my own awkwardness and they either begin talking or share their own nervousness and it takes the burden off of me.
And finally, my favorite bit of community advice:
“Personal Growth Moment: When attending a Community Session with a Candle and a Coffee Mug, place them FAAAR apart. I’ve nearly drunk candle wax twice now… 😆”
I’ll be back in a few days with some more advice on the topic of social anxiety etc.…this time, from the author Adam Grant. Plus, a book giveaway of Adam’s latest book, Hidden Potential! Please stay tuned.
In the meantime, if you or a friend or family member would like to participate in our Sunday chats (or access them, to watch later), please do consider joining the Quiet Life, or giving it as a holiday gift. We put a ton of labor (of love) into this work, and truly appreciate your support!
Or you can simply share our work with fellow lovers of Quiet, Depth, and Beauty:
If you participated in the Sunday chat and would like to share your experiences, or have thoughts on the above advice and insights, we are, as usual, all ears - please comment, below!
And we are very glad you’re here,