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  • Kevin

Leaping without looking

Updated: Jun 18, 2019

Toward the end of my time in college, I received some advice from a successful alumnus who was visiting campus. His advice was to always continue meeting new people, because building your network is the single most helpful thing you can do for your career. Ever since, I’ve always gone to as many parties and social functions as possible, even when I didn’t really “feel like” going. Granted, I’m a naturally social person, so I inherently enjoy meeting new people (and I’m willing to bet most stutterers are the same way too). Nevertheless, going to a party full of people you’ve never met unfailingly requires a degree of audacity on one's part because the inherent mystery involved will always make you unsure of what exactly is going to happen.

I normally drive to the party, blocking out any thoughts of negative consequences thst could happen from going to the party. I literally compartmentalize the steps involved in going to the party: The first phase - Driving to the party. The second phase - Dealing with any anxieties once I get there.

This type of compartmentalization is a way to break things down to more manageable pieces so I can get myself to do something that I know is good for me.

Now, I don’t know if compartmentalization is the healthiest way to force yourself to do something, it’s just a system that I’ve developed for myself over the years. I think it all comes down to what type of person you are and your personality. For me, postponing the feelings of fear and anxiety is a crude, simplistic way to get me to do things, and I’ll probably keep using it until I come up with a better method.

Compartmentalization can probably be applied to other situations too. If you have any other methods to force yourself to do things, please share.

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