Monday, July 29, 2013

Shyness - Working on overcoming it.

I am shy...painfully so actually.  This statement surprises absolutely no one who knows me.

I've been shy my entire life.  I don't like doing presentations in front of people - even though I need to sometimes in my job.  I start panicking and turn into a babbling fool.

Meeting new people is a horrible experience for me as well where I seem to leave my brain anywhere but where it should be.  I become quiet and can't think of anything intelligent to say.  To top it off, I'm allergic to alcohol so I can't even use that to help me be able to have a little more confidence

I don't do anything that's out of my comfort zone for fear of doing something that would make me look stupid.  I am hard on myself and looking stupid is almost like the end of the world for me.

Seriously, this has been terrible during my entire life.  I was a child and was afraid of going to a friend's house and knock on their door.  I wouldn't go anywhere alone because what if I needed to talk to a stranger?

I did get a job in customer service at Canadian Tire when I was 16.  For some reason, I was ok with dealing with strangers at the cash, probably because I felt like I was the one in control however wrong that may be.

In the past couple of years, I've been thrown into situations I would normally avoid.  I've been interviewed on the jumbotron at a Sens Game.  I've participated (albeit not willingly) in a promotion for Golden Palace Egg Rolls, again at Sens games.  I've called in to a radio to play a game and ask my favorite NKOTB member a question.  I've met my favorite NHL hockey player and actually didn't run away.  I've been to various Ottawa twitter events on my own. In the past couple of months,  I've driven places I'd never been to in order to volunteer for a BBQ charity event and at a charity golf tournament.  I've met many new people and guess what, I made it through relatively unscathed.

All these things may sound small to anyone else, but for me, they're a victory. 

Not sure exactly what happened, but I'm glad I'm slowly taking some chances.  I'm not expecting things to change overnight (considering some of the above things happened over 2 years ago), but I'm glad my comfort zone has expanded if ever so slightly.

I'd like to thank everyone that has a hand in helping me with this.  Family and friends have tried for years and I'm finally understanding that even if I do look silly, it's really not the end of the world.

Two people have been a big part of helping me with this problem recently and I wanted to single them out.

I'd like to thank the Ottawa Senators PA Announcer/radio host for helping me along a little...even though he probably doesn't realize it.  Stuntman Stu as he's known around Ottawa has been part of many of the above examples where I was drop kicked into the middle of a situation totally out of character for me. (radio and Ottawa Senators related) Instead of running away like I usually would, I stuck around for it.  There's no real reason for it, other than no matter how much of a fool I might look - I know he's probably done worse...way worse ;)

Also, my friend Spencer or @charityforcheo on twitter has also managed to get me to go to events and drive there on my own even though I didn't know where I was going.  It was for charity, but for the 38 previous years of my life, I'd never done anything like that.  Only this year I managed to get off my a$$ and do something different.  Thank you Spencer and keep up the great work you do for @KidsPlaySafe.  You're amazing!!!  :)

To everyone else that has any part in helping me become a new me - thank you. I appreciate your patience with me.  You are all great.  I'm hoping that I haven't stalled and will keep going with the progress.

It's possible - difficult, but possible :)

Julie / @Flip_4

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

The "Alfie situation"

It's now been a few days since Alfie has signed with the Detroit Red Wings for this upcoming season.  The shock has worn off for me and I'm ready to move on to next season and cheer for the Ottawa Senators.  I've read many blogs/comments/twitter posts about it in the last 4-5 days and see hate for both sides in this situation.

Here is my opinion, whether you like it or not.

Unless you were in the room with Bryan Murray and Alfie's agent, or unless you are a family member or close friend of Alfie's, you have ABSOLUTELY NO IDEA WHAT HAPPENED!!!!

I understand that in situations like this, people feel the need to blame someone for what happened.  It's easy to point a finger at the Sens for "low-balling" Alfie, or to blame Alfie for taking his ball home and leaving after being insulted.  Honestly though...does anyone really know what happened to make Alfie decide to go play somewhere else?

Can you really blame the Sens?  Can you really blame Alfie?

Unless you can give me solid facts for what happened between the end of the Sens playoff run and Alfie signing with the Red Wings, I refuse to blame anyone.

I'm not going to cancel my season tickets because I think the Sens mishandled the situation, because I don't know that they did.  They went in to a negotiation expecting to get a deal done and they were blindsided.

I'm not going to burn or throw out my Alfie jersey because I think he made the wrong decision.  The decision was his to make and he had every right to make it.  Just because you work for a company for 20 years and they treat you like a king, doesn't mean you're obligated to retire with that company.  You make the choice you feel is right for you and will make you happy.  You're not in Alfie's mind, you don't know what he's thinking.

Sure, I'm not happy with the way it all happened and I was as shocked as anyone else in Ottawa when the announcement was made.  I actually refused to believe it until it was officially announced and even still hoped it wasn't true until I heard the interviews.  I was sad, shocked and disbelieving of the whole situation.

I'm really not sure how I will react to seeing him in a Red Wings jersey next season, or how I'll react in his first game in Ottawa against the Sens.  I do know that I want the Sens to beat the Wings every single time they play them next season AND I want the Sens to beat them in the playoffs.  I want Alfie to be proven wrong.

I hope this year's team takes this as a challenge from Alfie to the Sens.  He doesn't think we're good enough, let's show him that we have just as good of a chance as Detroit to win the Cup.

It's now up to the veterans on this team to fill up the hole left by Alfie in the leadership department.  Phillips, Spazza, Neil and everyone else need to step it up.

I'm excited at the upcoming season and I can't wait to see what the team will be able to do.

In the meantime, I'll fondly remember the good times with Alfie in this city and wish him well in his career...just never against the Sens.