Sunday, June 3, 2012

How Open Can I Be - Entry #7

I consider myself a private person.  This admission could be seen as the very antithesis of the Writing Project, which is a very open and public display of my thoughts and feelings.  As I sit down each day, deciding who to write to and how to express myself, I struggle with how much I am willing to reveal to the person at the receiving end.  Most of the cards and letters I have already mailed have been matter-of-fact missives—thank you notes, good to hear from you, and job well done.  I have not yet been stretched on the emotional front.  There has been no need to become circumspect or philosophical, at this point, in my correspondence.  Will I become more introspective?  More forthcoming?  I honestly don’t know. 

The question I struggle with about my discretion also rolls over to my blog posts.  A letter or card is to one person.  Opening up to an individual, especially someone I may have some history with, is not as daunting as an entry to this blog, which could be read by hundreds, maybe thousands of people I have never met.  This cautiousness on my part could be seen as being prudent, over-thinking a task that is more straightforward, or being a coward. 

In some respect, these questions are at the very core of today’s Internet.  Nowadays, maneuvering through our technological world means surrendering some part of ourselves to the technology behemoths—Facebook, Google, Twitter, Yahoo, etc.—whether we choose to or not.  Privacy settings or concerns are brushed aside by the masses.  Maybe it’s a generational thing.  That part of society that was nurtured on social media feel more comfortable negotiating this environment and letting a good portion of themselves all hang out.  I don’t.  Interestingly, people that have visited my website,, might be scratching their heads because of my immersion in technology.   I catalog and embrace numerous resources on the Internet.  There is a Facebook page, a Twitter account (istudentaffairs), informative podcasts, and much more on our pages.  But I see my attitude towards technology more as a way of doing business rather then as my personal choice in relinquishing personal privacy and disclosure concerns.

So, as week two of the Writing Project begins I wonder--will I stay a bit reserved in my correspondence and blogs?   Continue to be more deliberate and less revealing?  A colleague would say these ruminations and questions are typical of my personality type (for those keeping score I am an I-N-T-J).  How much of myself I am willing to put out there will be an intriguing byproduct of my journey.

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