So. There is a me who has … oh, let’s say, issues about making phone calls.

And there is a me who does not even slightly have this problem.

And I know this because …

Well, according to the Book of Me, which knows all:

I have been known to put off calling certain people for weeks — even though I like them and want to talk to them — because the thought of picking up the phone makes me hide under the bed.

And I can also easily and gracefully jump on a teleclass where a thousand people are waiting to hear me say smartnesses, completely unprepared, and not even feel the slightest bit nervous.

Weird. Okay. Where do I go from here?

My clever, clever plan.

Obviously, the crazy best thing to do is to (nicely) lure these two selves into a room and eavesdrop while they have a conversation. And take notes!

But first I am going to make a list of everything I know about each of them.

And then I am going to ask each one to tell me more.

What I know about The Me Who Dreads Making Phone Calls:

She (especially) does not like to call:

  • if it involves setting up an appointment
  • anyone related to her
  • good friends she hasn’t spoken with in a looooooong time

What informs the not-wanting? What situations hold discomfort for her?

  • if there might be waiting or being put on hold
  • anything involving confrontation
  • possibility of questions that she can’t answer (or doesn’t want to)
  • when there is no limit, no end in sight, no way to know how to end things

How she is feeling in this state of not-wanting-to-call:

  • irritable
  • anxious
  • worried that other people will try to make her feel guilty

What else?

She has a lot in common with how I felt when I was a smoker.

In fact, sometimes I think I mostly smoked because it was such a good way to avoid things like making phone calls.

She likes safety, quiet, isolation.

What I know about The Me Who Has No Problem Whatsoever Making Phone Calls:

The calls she makes with such ease:

  • client calls. Fun!
  • teleclasses and teaching events
  • her gentleman friend
  • her best friend

The elements of these calls. What gives them so much ease?

  • she is a pirate queen
  • there is comfort for her: she is welcome, she belongs here
  • there is nothing to defend
  • there is either an agreed upon ending point or it’s no big deal to say okay gotta go

How she is feeling in this state of calling not being a big deal?

  • relaxed
  • gracious
  • at ease
  • comfortable
  • safe

What else?

She also likes safety, quiet, isolation. But she brings those qualities with her.

And she also has access to other qualities, like radiance, groundedness and grace.

She has a lot in common with Teacher Me and Yoga Teacher Me and Shivanaut Me.

Okay, Me Who Dreads Making Phone Calls. What can you tell me?

She says:

I need more comfort. More! Comfort!

I do not need to be talked out of this or healed of this or … fixed. Don’t fix me.

Just give me space and comfort.

Things that help me: structure, form, order, certainty, lists.

Things that stress me out: mainly just not knowing how to get out.

I need another fox in my video game, you know?

Spaciousness. Protection. A better invisibility cloak. Lowered expectations. Trust.

Really, the best scenario would be if I didn’t ever have to call anyone. But if I could go away and someone else would do it for me, that would be okay too.

I say: Thank you for telling me what you need, sweetie. I will do everything I can to make sure you have access to these qualities.

And you, Me Who Doesn’t Have A Problem With Phone Calls? What do you want me to know?

She says:

You think of me as the strong one, but the truth is that both of us (the one who can make calls and the one who can’t) are strong.

And we both exist to protect you and to serve you and to make your life good.

We are sisters. And partners.

We are not as separate as you think. We exist together.

I say: Wow. That wasn’t what I was expecting. Thank you for telling me. Appreciated.

That’s where I’m stopping for now.

It just seems like a good place to stop.

But yeah, the two versions of me had a fairly entertaining conversation and then we all went out for beer.

I’ll post it here next week. In the meantime …

Comment zen for today …

As always: We all have our stuff. We’re all working on our stuff.

You are more than welcome to share things you know (or want to know) about various selves or parts-of-you.

This is a safe space for us to be with our stucknesses, which means 1) we don’t try to push through fear, and 2) we meet people where they are and we don’t give advice (unless someone specifically asks for it).

I don’t put Phobic-Me out in public in order to be told what to do. I let her show up here so that none of us has to be alone in this. And for hopefulness and for the process of being in a process.

Internet hugs all around.

The Fluent Self