Tonight I had my first career class at the community college, and as much as I was looking forward to it, it turned out to be a real disappointment. When I first arrived 15 minutes before the class was scheduled to start, I noticed that the room was dark and nobody was there. I thought that was odd, and another girl walked by and was looking in the classroom too, wondering what was going on. I asked her if she was in the career class and she said yeah, and I started talking to her about the class and where the teacher must be. She said she wanted to study psychology when I brought up the topics of careers, and I told her I’m undecided though I’m starting to find interest in Occupational Therapy. I made small talk a little while longer until people started going into the classroom and turning on the lights.
I sat down next to the girl and told her my name and she told me hers(Jacora). It felt good knowing that I had already made a friend since the classroom seemed really empty. By the time the teacher arrived, there was maybe 20 people in the class, but still there were numerous empty chairs. The class felt really empty.
The teacher turned out to be really monotone and boring. He had to keep telling people to stop glancing at the clock, because it was obvious that many of us were bored out of our minds and couldn’t wait to go home. It’s disappointing though because I was looking forward to this class the most. I thought it’d be exciting to be surrounded by a bunch of people wondering what they want to do with their lives and have a teacher who can really reach out to us and help us, but no, it wasn’t anything like that.
During the break, I went to sit out in the common room area where they have some comfy chairs, and an older lady I recognized from the class sat across from me. At first I flipped through the career book awkwardly, not making eye contact because I didn’t know if she’d want to talk or not or how I’d talk to her. Eventually I just thought heck with it and looked up and said, “You’re taking the career class too right?” And she looked up and said yeah, and I asked her what she thought of it so far. I said it seemed really boring, and she agreed and said he seems really boring and unmotivational. She said she was having trouble staying awake. I said I was glad it wasn’t just me then. We then talked about other classes we were taking, and both said we wanted to drop this class now. She said her name is Debra. I recommended that she try and add the psych class I’m taking, because it seems like a good class.
Even though the class wasn’t what I hoped for and now I’ve officially dropped it, at least I went out of my way to talk to two strangers. I think it’s starting to get easier now the more I’ve done this. I have a better idea of how to start conversations and feel more self-confident in my ability to carry on conversations with people I don’t know. Practice definitely does help. As January is coming to close, I’m starting to plan my next goal for February. As of right now I’ve decided that I want to dedicate February to “Improving Friendships”. Now that I’ve gone out of my way to meet new people that I’d normally not even talk to, I want to focus on building my friendships with the people I already know. I never kept tally of the number of strangers I’ve talked to, but I know I’ve talked to quite a few, and I’m quite proud of myself for that. It’s not as easy as it may sound. Negative thoughts, heart racing, etc can make it quite difficult. I’m sure it’s much easier for others than it is for me, and I’m sure it’s even harder for others than it is for me.(and it’s pretty hard for me, though I’ve improved a lot even in a month) A lot of it has to do with being in the right mind set and feeling good about yourself. Exercise, showers, talking to friends, receiving compliments or praise from friends and teachers: those all help with building self-confidence. Before I went out sometimes I found it helpful to look myself in the mirror and remind myself that I’m self-confident and loved by others, so I should love myself. People will be more than happy to talk to me. It seemed to help.