My children have well and truly been bitten by the swimming bug. I spent just one session as a spectator hot and uncomfortable, sat next to another mum who was like a fog horn shouting KATIE as loud as she could on repeat. It was an assault on my senses which I did not want again.
I looked at the parents on the poolside helping and thought, it has got to be better down there than up here and I can be helpful in some way. Next thing I know I am timekeeping, blowing whistles, flipping lap cards, and assessing starts and turns.
Every time I volunteer, I have a chat with the person in the lane next to me. First, I met a surgeon. “So, you operate all week then spend your weekends on the poolside!” “Yep,” she replied. Next, I met a dad that had swum the English Channel, and on and on it went.
The volunteer roles served as one great big equaliser, so by the time we got to chatting about our lives I felt completely comfortable. Whereas when I know I am going to meet someone like a Nobel Prize winner for example (true story) I faltered, tripping over my words and redness rising in my cheeks.
So, what is the difference? It is 100% my perception. What I have discovered is that we are way more alike than we realise.
If you get worked up about talking to someone you deem significant, focus on what you have in common.
✅ Two arms two legs (check first obviously and adjust if needed)
✅ Living on planet earth
✅ Continue to find commonalities
As Nir Eyal (international bestselling author of Indistractible) says when I interviewed him on Women in STEM Career & Confidence (iTunes/Spotify), “it’s all prom.” By that he means, at the time it was a big deal, but years later looking back it is insignificant. It’s the same with life, whether it’s a decision you are trying to make, a person you are meeting, or a talk you’re giving.
When you look back – it’s all just prom.
Keep Opening Up,