When you work at an NGO that organizes intercultural trainings, seminars and exchanges, it is easy to meet many people in short period of time. This is what happened to me: at the NGO where I worked there was a different project almost every month and on every project different people.
At the beginning, it is really exciting: people from all over Europe, bringing different experiences, with different backgrounds. This means a lot of friends from all over Europe and from all over the world, friends you can visit and who will visit you: the intercultural environment you have always dreamed of!
Nevertheless, after some time spent with different people every time you feel you want more from those relations: it is nice to talk to different people and to discuss the most disparate topics with them, but then after having met more than 100 people in a few months you start to not remember who you met where and what their names were.
I generally like to pay attention to the conversations I have: when I talk to somebody I like to remember as much as possible about our conversations, about the person, what he or she likes, does not like, about the personality of that person. But this requires time and attention! The problem is that this kind of situations brings people to act fast, and in some sense to create a character of ourselves to offer to the others in these situations. This is what I have seen in the people who have been doing this longer than me.
There is the sweet guy who is always available for the others, always smiling and pretending to support the others.
There is the shiny and crazy girl, always saying what she thinks, always creating challenges and stimulating the others.
There is the girl gushing, always active, who feels “16 years old in the morning and 60 in the evening!”
There is the guy everybody is asking why he is there: the one flirting with everyone even though he has a girlfriend and still not catching anybody.
There is the girl feeling insecure, but who everybody loves.
Then there is you and everybody observes the form of yourself you are still deciding to offer.
No matter if they (or we) are really like this or not, if this is just one small part of our personality or the furthest corner of ourselves. We will always be asked to show one part of ourselves, and it always depends on us what side we want to show and how much we want to invest, even in brief relations!