jame_alec: A young Magneto and Professor X looking at each other. Magneto has a snazzy hat on (Default)
[personal profile] jame_alec
Yesterday my mom called. I haven't talked to her but maybe once or twice since starting T, and not in the past two weeks. The first thing she said was "You sound stuffy, are your sinuses bothering you?" Maybe I'm getting a bit of a voice drop going on. I did surprise myself a few nights ago by being able to easily get my voice lower than I normally can, although when I fall into the "I'm using my polite voice" mindset my voice still goes high.

Now that my bangs are so long they're falling into my eyes I've given in and bought an electric razor set with various guards. I was kind of liking how my hair was flipping out at the base of my neck, but cutting with scissors is too much of a pain in the ass and I don't have the skill to do it anyway. I do have the skill to run a razor all over my head!

Continuing to read Unwritten Rules of Social Relationships:

Rule 3: Everyone in the world makes mistakes; it doesn't have
to ruin your day.

Oh lord, this was a huge one with me for the longest time. It still is. I don't remember this, but my mom has told me that until I was in 2nd grade I'd come home crying if I didn't make 100 on everything I did in school. Not just tests, but homework too. I really took mistakes to heart. I'm not quite as bad, but I do fall into the trap of thinking how stupid I am and how obvious a mistake was when I do make them now. I still have a terrible fear of new situations. Planning ahead and walking through in my mind what I'm going to do, what to do if this happens, what to say if I'm asked that, what to say if someone does this, does help a little but it still makes me very anxious.

It's like my brain has permanent lag when it comes to social interaction. Unless it's a social interaction I've had lots of practice with to the point that it's preprogrammed (like interaction with cashiers. "Hi, how are you?" "Good, thanks." "Will that be all for you today?" "Yes, thank you." etc) I just freeze up and try to figure out what I'm supposed to say, which ends with me stuttering out something and getting weird looks and feeling like an idiot and beating myself up over making a mistake.

This was most apparent when I trained as cashier for my first job. I was terrified of handing someone the wrong change and the register coming up wrong at the end of the shift. My manager (who was a nice guy) was standing beside me and telling me how to work the register as I was ringing customers up, which was just a bit much for me. I had to process his verbal instructions, verbal comments from the customers, visually acquaint myself with the cash register, and calculate out how to turn $14.68 into something I could give the customer. Which doesn't sound like a big deal to most people, but trying to do all that at once just overloaded me to the point I looked horrified and was sweating bullets. My manager repeatedly told me "It's okay, don't worry, calm down" but pushed me and kept me on the register until I knew how to do it and could do it automatically. Which I'm glad he did, it was just a rough way to learn.

This also recently happened at work, but I'm happy to say I was able to move past it. I came up short on the register and was absolutely distraught. I counted and recounted the money deposit bags, the register, looked for where I might have dropped cash, checked to see if I accidentally put it in my pocket... anything I could think of. Finally I stopped myself and said "It's $20. You have made more expensive mistakes in the past. It is not the end of the world" and I was able to close up and move on. It still smarts to have lost $20, but it'll just make me more aware and careful in the future.

Rule 4: Honesty is Different than Diplomacy

I don't think this is something I have a lot of trouble with. I grew up in a family that was very politeness oriented and I was regularly corrected when I said something rude, so I became pretty hyper-tuned to what was appropriate to say. I think this also boils down to my anxiety about making mistakes. When I do slip up and say something rude because I think it's honest, it's usually with people I'm close to and that I let my guard down around.
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jame_alec: A young Magneto and Professor X looking at each other. Magneto has a snazzy hat on (Default)

March 2010

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