Conference or social anxiety nightmare?
Earlier this week, I returned from a very large out-of-town conference. I typically enjoy the science aspects of conferences because it is so neat to hear cutting-edge research and presentations from experts in the field. And I don’t mind the crowds and all the people either. It is easy to blend in and remain anonymous amongst the thousands of other conference attendees. However, I HATE the networking and social aspects of conferences, and this conference was particularly “networky.” It was a borderline social anxiety nightmare.
Social anxiety nightmare #1 – I had to room with someone I had never met before.
Social anxiety nightmare #2 – I forgot to pack a single pair of underwear and had to go purchase some at the mall. I seriously hate buying underwear at stores.
Social anxiety nightmare #3 – Poster sessions are always so awkward and terrible.
Social anxiety nightmare #4 – I had to go to a networking dinner.
I am relieved this conference is over, especially because it wasn’t 100% applicable to my research. But I have two more conferences coming up in the next month, and I have to speak at both of them. AHHH!
The author of this story is a postdoctoral associate in the biomedical sciences where she engages in clinical research using magnetic resonance imaging. She enjoys biking, reading, and warm weather. This story was published on February 23, 2017, on the author’s blog, Science and Social Anxiety (available here), and has been republished here with her permission.