i posted my feelings on the internet again

from evy's notebook

daily journalling, sat jan 8

i posted my feelings on the internet again. and people liked it! it feels really good to get this attention, though i also feel ashamed of enjoying it so much.

a few people thanked me for being so vulnerable. i think people overestimate how vulnerable i am? those things i shared are things i've been talking to people about for months - i've learned how to phrase them in ways that are interesting and palatable, and then i shared them more publicly in ways that i'm pretty sure people will either enjoy or feel mostly neutral about.

i could see why people would think this kind of share is vulnerable, and i believe that it would be for most people. why doesn't it feel that way for me? maybe the more people i talk to about these things one-on-one, the more i feel supported in my feelings, the more my thoughts seem good and reasonable and interesting. and so i'm less scared of people judging me, because i know that these thoughts and feelings were good to share with at least some people, and probably could be great to share with more. but yeah, idk, maybe posting things like this is more risky than i think? but i think the vulnerability often comes from an uncertainty in how you feel or if it's okay, and i already processed that in 1:1 conversations with friends.

it's rare that i process feelings totally in private. i share things with friends as i'm thinking about them, like, all the time. it's almost rare to journal about something and not share those ideas with at least someone shortly after. i almost write my thoughts as if i'm always talking to someone, talking for someone. is that a bad idea? maybe more secret thinking would help me uncover new things. but also i think this has been working pretty well for me, so i'll take it for now. i like having friends to help me reflect on things.

and then eventually i share a lot those thoughts more widely -- and a lot of why i share more widely is a hope that my reflections might help others. i spend so much of my time thinking about how to feel good and more specifically how to manage anxiety and how to be brave and how to build strong and healthy connections with people. these things feel important, and i spend so much time thinking about them that probably i'm thinking of things that would be helpful to others that maybe they haven't thought about yet. a lot of the things i figure out come from conversations with friends or things that i read, they come from other people's thoughts. and by posting my thoughts online, it's like a way to give back.

hm, what happens if i compare this to more scientific research? or like, programming? people learn how to write software from reading books or blog posts or talking to people. and then they think of something cool or novel and write a post to share that knowledge back to the community.

i feel like i do something similar, but it's with feelings and relationships and self-improvement and whatever. and because those are my topics of interest, sharing becomes perceived as a lot more vulnerable. and maybe it is, because i'm sharing things more personal and reflective of myself. i'm sharing stories about me, not about some random thing i did or learned about outside of myself. but i've spent so long being open about my feelings and thought processes, and seen how much they can help others, that it doesn't feel that scary to do it. and it's almost unnerving that others perceive it that way, because then they feel a sense of closeness to me that i don't reciprocate. even in 1:1 interactions, sharing personal stories is intimate for me, but not like that intimate or vulnerable. the feeling of closeness comes more from how the other person responds to me and interacts with what they learn about me.

another thing that i keep thinking about and don't know how to think about is... Thought Leadership ™

i feel like the thing i'm doing is having thoughts, and then feeling like they're important things to think about, and then sharing them with others in hopes that they might think about these things too. is that not literally thought leadership? but that term has so much negative connotation these days, and it feels weird to use it seriously. i'm also nervous about the idea of trying to affect other people's thoughts, like how much power do i actually want to have here? if i learn how to write compelling stories and can convince people to think about something a certain way, will that actually be helpful for them? how should i know? but also literally everything we read or say to each other is trying to influence us to think about something in some way, i think.

idk. i think the thing i'm doing is good. i think i'm helping. and the attention from others also helps me. it helps me feel connected to others, it helps me feel more excited about the things i was excited to share. it encourages people to share their own related thoughts to my thoughts, which helps me reflect and helps me find friends with like-minded values -- and maybe that's one of the best parts of this.

alright, that's def over 750 words for today, so i'll leave it at that.