Another fantastic day at the 73rd annual meeting of the Society of Vertebrate Paleontology.
I’m a little delirious right now. It’s nearly midnight here, and well past midnight at home.
Today was about meeting new people. One of my challenges as a human is overcoming my own social anxiety. You might not know it, but I have nearly crippling anxiety. Medications help, but determination gets the most results.
Today I had a chance to go hang out with people, none of whom I knew. None of whom I would ordinarily have cause to cross paths with. But because of friends of friends, I found myself away from the meeting hotel and hanging out with a whole bunch of paleo-professionals that I had never known before.
But this is the power of professional meetings: The making of new connections. If you’re socially adept, this is easy. If social interaction is not your thing, you still need to do it.
I made connections today – and at every meeting like this that I attend – that has already kindled new friendships and may lead to great collaborations later on.
It’s exciting. It’s what motivates me to spend the money each year to be here. It’s the motivation to go to every meeting.
It’s also exhausting. So it’s off to bed. Time to get some rest before it’s time to start all over in the morning.