By Audrey Schroder
I’m excited to share something. I’m afraid to write in my personal blog! Why am I admitting this? Because I can. Because I want to. Several years ago, my mom suggested something for the beginning of a job interview. She said while you’re getting settled in, say to your interviewer “I’m a tad nervous.” Most people feel this way, and chances are your interviewer is too. By exposing this vulnerability, you are doing two things. First, simply getting it out of your head and saying the words out loud will can help you relax. Second, it shows you are human. We have emotions, speaking to them demonstrates authenticity. It also says you are excited about the job opportunity.
By sharing my vulnerability of personal writing here, I’m attempting to get out of my own way. When I set out to create this new personal blog, my goal was simply to write. I want to be real. To be honest in the best way I know how. My goal is to become a better writer. And, let me tell you, it is scary to put myself out there. To share my own stories, with complete strangers.
Permission not to smile
By Audrey Schroder
“Try to smile more.” This is what my 8th grade gym teacher, Mr. Dengler wrote on my report card. I had Resting Bitch Face before it was A Thing. People often told me to smile. I didn’t realize other women experienced this until it became a hot topic within the last couple years. Artist and activist, Tatyana Fazlalizadeh uses art to speak out against the street harassment of women. Her art series “Stop Telling Women to Smile,” features her street art based on interviews with women about their experiences.
People pleaser + afflicted with Resting Bitch Face = forced smiles
I’ve known for a long time that it takes less muscles to frown than smile. (Actually while researching for this blog, I found there is no scientific proof this is true.) That’s why I make a point to at least try to make the ends of my mouth turn more up that down. When I was working on McDonald’s social media team, my colleagues were situated at square desks, so at any given time, there were at least two faces for my smile/frown to be seen. It was in this position that I began faking a half smile while I was working. I was worried my coworkers would think I was scowling and frowning all day long. The habit is so ingrained, I often smile when I’m about to fall into dreamland, or when I first wake up and don’t yet have my eyes open. I suddenly realize I don’t need to smile for anyone. It’s pretty bizarre.