Monday, August 14, 2023

Breaking the Ice: An Open Book Blog hop post


 Welcome to Open Book Blog Hop. You can find us every Monday talking about the writing life. I hope you'll check out all the posts: you'll find the links at the bottom of this post.
What's your favorite ice-breaker (meetings, parties, dates, socials)?  

Like many writers, I run towards introverted. I've developed a healthy collection of social skills and coping mechanisms over the years, but "peopling" still wears me out

A face down cartoon cat with "fumes" coming out its head and the slogan "too much peopling"
image source

I detest most so-called ice-breakers, those weird little (extrovert created) games that force people into unnatural interactions with strangers should be illegal under the Geneva conventions as torture. As a teacher, I was subjected to so many of them over the years in the name of team-building and collegiality. 

No, I don't want to build something out of marshmallows and toothpicks with a table full of strangers or compete to see who can find someone who has been to France the fastest. This does not make me feel good or result in a human connection that matters in any way. 

a container of "icebreaker sours" candy
image source

But I do recognize that there is a need to meet people. I appreciate being left to do this in a low-key way, at my own pace and volume. Honestly, meeting people works best for me if I can meet one or two people at a time, and there's a mutual acquaintance there to connect us. 

In in-person, writer-centered activities, it's easy to meet people though. I just ask, "What do you write?" and sit and listen. 

Online, there are plenty of people posting little games, surveys, or questions, and I can just join in that conversation. I can participate in things like this blog hop, where a group of people are all in their own space, but thinking and talking about the same things. 

I don't want anyone to break the ice, honestly. I'm happy to let it thaw more naturally, a little bit at a time. 

How about you? Do you like ice-breakers? What works for you when you're meeting people? 

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  1. I totally agree, Samantha. Nothing is worse than having to endure team-building games when you're an introvert.

    1. Definitely NOT among the things I miss about teaching.

  2. I had forgotten about icebreakers of the "Build something" variety. Always someone's vision exceeds the materials provided. :)