It’s been over two and a half years since my first blog event. I remember when bloggers started mentioning events to me, I was thinking:
- What, companies hold events for bloggers? Is that a thing?
- I’ll never be able to meet these Internet people.
- I hate my voice. Therefore people will hate me.
I often see on social media new bloggers worrying about going to events, worrying about speaking to those they’ve spoken to on Twitter but never in real life. So I wanted to talk about my first blog event.
The very first time I met up with bloggers was a few months before my first blog event. I had been regularly talking privately with Hayley from Tea Party Beauty when she invited me along to a brunch with some others. I had never spoken to the others before, apart from India who I was messaging daily at the time. She lived right up the road from me.
I was really nervous before the brunch. I got up early and showered, washed my hair and did my make-up. I did that thing that women do when you don’t know what to wear so try loads of things on and make a mess. It was as important as a first date. Then I went to pick India up and I remember feeling nervous. We drove to the place we were having lunch and people were standing outside. These people were bloggers. HI BLOGGERS.
We went inside and sat down. They all knew each other and I remember India seemed really confident and I felt quiet and shy and a bit stupid. After food, we carried on talking and I started to feel a bit more comfortable and started chatting away.
A few months later, Hayley invited me to Leeds May Meet, an event she had organised herself.
Again, I was nervous. I went early to help her set up and lost my phone in the goody bags as I was putting leaflets in. Typical me to do something stupid like that and then feel embarrassed about it. I spent 10 minutes or so looking through the bags trying to find my phone. Someone tried to call it but it was on silent!
That’s the thing about me. I’m really awkward and do stupid stuff all the time because I struggle to think before I speak or do. I’m clumsy AF and as soon as I’m around a bunch of new people, I’m even clumsier.
So yeah, there was that. I felt out of place, people were showing up in pairs or groups. I knew a few people from the brunch but they all knew other people. Finally, I found Roxy at the bar and we kind of stuck together the whole time. We both joked about how awkward we are and clicked right away. From that moment, things were a lot better. Sometimes all you need is someone else by your side.
So, the point of this post is that I just wanted everyone to know that it’s normal to feel worried about going to blog events or meeting new people. It’s okay to feel nervous and over analyse what you look like, what you might sound like, what you might say. It’s okay to not react properly to someone introducing yourself and being shy.
I think almost everyone feels out of place in new situations and it’s normal if that’s how you feel. Stop worrying about that and enjoy the experience.
You will talk to people and you won’t die. You might even make some friends and meet up with them again. Once you’ve met some local bloggers, when other events come up you can arrange to meet them before so you don’t have to go alone to future events.
Even if you do have to go alone, it does get easier to talk to people. I’m not the type of person that can go up to someone and say hello, but there are loads of bloggers are there that are comfortable doing that, so there is no need to worry.
I’ve been shocked many times by bloggers that come up to my group and say hi and then stick with us. We all introduce ourselves and it’s fine for them to hang with us – so if you need to be that girl, then embrace it as I always admire how brave they are to be able to do that.
It’s not a feeling that will last forever. A few days after the 2016 Bloggers Blog Awards, Amy, a bloggers whose blog I frequently visit wrote this post about how she felt at the event being a shy blogger. It can be hard but it is almost like being the new girl at work. The more events you go to, the more people you see and at local events you’ll see the same people over and over again.
I’ve had some amazing experiences at blogging events – so try not to put them off because you’re nervous.
Now when I go to an event, I am never nervous. Only excited to see who is there!
So that was how I felt at my first blog event. How did you feel?