I’ve always thought of myself as a warm person… Especially because for most of my life I was feeling insecure and inferior to most everyone else. I was eager to please and submissive, and I suppose I mistook that as warmth. Turns out that warmth is something utterly different. In my opinion true warmth can only come from being comfortable in one’s own skin and being open, not scared of others.

Even though in the last few years I’ve learned to trust on a level that I never did before, I’ve discovered recently that I’m still very suspicious of others. Especially if they say something nice to me… It’s connected to a feeling that I’ve always had, that if anything good happens to me, a bus is soon a-coming to run me over. A mechanism that is in place in one area of one’s life, often extends to other areas as well…

I’ve been working on being more trusting, more warm and more open in the last couple of weeks, and I’m already reaping the benefits: people are being way nicer to me in return! I never realized that I (mostly) hadn’t looked people in the eye before, that I often neglected to thank people when they complimented me, that I drifted away in conversations… I have not been welcoming, for fear that I let others get too close and they try to hurt me.

I’m not so scared anymore. I think it comes from the knowledge that I can be assertive when I need to be, that I know how to say no. Without that, people do sometimes take advantage. But I am a warm person, and I’m not scared to let people see that now. No one can take from me what I don’t give.