i stink at conversations

Are the days of face to face interaction with your friends fading away?

Sometimes I wonder if it’s because we feel know a lot about what’s going on with someone before they even say a word. Probably because we saw their recent update on Facebook or their last Instagram post.

(Let me park here and say, I am not anti-social media. I think there is a lot of benefit to it! But, I also think it has effected our ability to sit down and have a meaningful conversation)

And how many times is what we see on social media, a true representation of how someone is really doing?

I have felt really convicted of this lately.

It used to be that when you wanted to talk to your friend, you walked (or drove) over to her house, sat down and had a long chat, or maybe you gave her a phone call. I know I have replaced that with texting and facebooking for sure.

I don’t want relationships to just be surface-y. And it’s hard to get deeper. It really is.

I could think of a ton of excuses of why this is hard for me and a lot of other young moms out there. Just the fact that most of the time we have our young ones with us when we hang out with a friend! The thought of getting out of the house and trying to squeeze in a few minutes of conversation between the mommy duties is hard. BUT.. I think it’s still worth the try.

And though those things are valid excuses I have used before… I have a confession to make. There’s something else that can keep me from have face to face conversations and relationships.

I think it’s my INSECURITIES. It’s so stupid, but so true.

Sometimes.. I am scared to have a face to face conversation because I have less control of how someone may perceive me. What if I say something without thinking and offend them (which will happen sometimes, I often have no impulse control)? What if I don’t listen enough? Ask enough questions about them? What if they ask me something personal, could I be vulnerable? What if they don’t like the way my house looks? What if they don’t like the way I discipline my kids? What if I hang out with them in person and they don’t seem to want to hang out again?

Am I the only one who goes through this ridiculous struggle?

Heres the part that’s been hitting home lately. God made us to BE in relationships. First with Him… but also with others. That is how He designed us to go through this journey we call life. And without other Godly women in our lives, we begin to alienate ourselves and rarely show our true colors (just our ones we post on social media.. the ones we have control over). I don’t want to do that anymore!

So here’s some ways I am going to try and fight this battle.

First, I am going to STOP OVERTHINKING everything. My social anxieties often start like this… A friend will share something, I respond.. but then comes the.. overthinking.

Here’s the dialog in my head…

“Maybe I shouldn’t have tried to empathize and respond with a time that happened to me too? Does that sound like I am just being insensitive to what they said?  Maybe I should have just listened and not responded? Or is it good that I replied and they don’t feel alone on that struggle?” Back and Forth… eek. Stupid, right?

This process of wondering and trying to guess what someone is thinking is a rapid route to feelings of insecurity and stress.

So, I am going to STOP overthinking.

I can definitely work on listening more and being slower to speak or respond. But, I also don’t want to be scared to be myself and say what’s on my heart.

Second, I am going to just DO IT. Just try my best to spend time with my friends. Even if I can only get with that friend once and awhile… make the most of the time we have together. And stop talking about things don’t matter when we get together… start talking about REAL things. Find out how I can support and love my friends better. I am going to stop just assuming I know how they are doing because I see their posts on social media.. and really ask them.. face to face.

I know my first priorities right now are my relationship with God, my husband, and being a mom (and my kids are young, so this is extra demanding). But, I also need to step away from my fears and insecurities and have some girlfriends I can love, be challenged by, and walk with.

Thanks for letting me share! Hope it made sense and maybe even encouraged someone else who struggles here…

And I am thankful for those friends in my life who have let me put this into practice (and who love me despite all of my weird insecurities.. haha)

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