Sorry I’m Late, I Didn’t Want to Come: An Introvert’s Year of Living Dangerously, by Jessica Pan
Published by Transworld Digital, 30th May 2019
Genres: Nonfiction, autobiography, memoir, self-help, psychology, humour
Format: Kindle eBook
Jessica Pan is a self-diagnosed “shintrovert”, a shy introvert. Finding herself in a bit of a rut, both personally and professionally, Jessica challenges herself to live like an extrovert for a year. This experiment was designed to see if her life would be any different if she had been born an extrovert instead.
Jessica sets herself a number of challenges, which include speaking in public, travelling solo and doing stand-up comedy! Activities which all introverts would readily classify in the “worst nightmare” category.
My name is Katie, and I am a shintrovert. (I said this to myself because the idea of standing up in front of a group of people and even just saying these few words fills me with anxiety and makes my palms sweat just a little).
I can relate to Jessica in a lot of ways: I am shy, I don’t like large groups of people, I have a terrible fear of public speaking, I have few, but very close friendships. I could go on and on. I have often marvelled at those people who seem to move effortlessly through a room full of people, or those who can flawlessly pull of a speech or presentation. How do they do it!?
I really enjoyed this book for all the humorous situations Jessica gets into throughout her year-long experiment. But I also cringed at the idea of taking on any of these challenges.
But, as I read, I did find myself wondering if my life could be different if I pushed myself out of my comfort zone a bit more. Don’t get me wrong, I am not a stranger to being outside my comfort zone. I mean, I have travelled solo in many different countries, I moved to South Africa to become a safari guide, I have jumped out of planes and off the sides of mountains… But could those experiences have been different if I had pushed myself that bit further, into extrovert territory?
I can’t go back in time to find out, but maybe I can take some of Jessica’s lessons forward with me.
“That’s the truth of the world, Jessica, nobody waves – but everybody waves back.”
I think this statement is especially true in our modern times. Everybody is so turned in on themselves and afraid to make the first move, even for something as simple as smiling at someone in the street, or acknowledging when something weird happens on public transport.
“But self-confidence doesn’t’ find us: we have to push ourselves to do something hard, live through it and then confidence will eventually follow. I’d faked confidence, and by doing so, created it. It really did feel like a feat of wizardry.”
Fake it till you make it, right!? I guess all I can do is give it a try and find out! But I don’t think I will be performing stand-up comedy any time soon!
My rating: 4/5