I’ve finally done it! While I’m still not totally okay with phones on my own time, I’ve conquered two of the three biggest issues I was fretting about at work – booking tickets on boat cruises, and reserving accommodations for visitors. The policy at our information centre is that we do everything we possibly can for people, but I wasn’t being forthcoming in offering to provide those particular services because I didn’t want to deal with the phone calls.
Yesterday, though, I did happen to mention them and people took me up on it. Fortunately, the people at the boat cruise are incredibly nice and always happy to hear from my coworkers and myself, so that wasn’t too scary (plus I listened to my coworker the other day when calling to get an idea). Then when it came time to book rooms for people, I was dealing with an absolutely lovely couple who were on vacation and very easy going. I ended up calling one place, finding no vacancies, calling and booking another. A few minutes later though, the husband came back and said they changed their minds, so I had to cancel and then call another B&B (who I already knew were pleasant, because they’d taken the time to call me and let me know they had an availability earlier that morning) and book them there. I feel thoroughly initiated into the world of reserving stuff now. At work, at least.
I work in a tourism information centre, so I have to make a ton of phone calls inquiring about things, giving information to people over the phone and so on. I’m finding this is extremely helpful, because I’m learning how other people talk on the phone (and also how not to), plus I don’t have time to think about things I just call. While I’m still hesitant, I’m getting much better.
Since I’m not 18 I recently discovered that I’m not eligible for internet banking (although I only have 25 more days until I can, which will make things far simpler) so my parents told me that I had to use telephone banking to pay for my university transfer application. After going over what it was that I wanted to ask for and do, since I really had no idea how any sort of banking worked because I’ve only recently begun to be in control of my finances, my parents sat on skype with me while I called (and was put on hold for the second time ever!). Turns out the guy who I had to talk to to set up a bill was super nice and he was patient with me which was what I was worried about. Just the other day I sat down and called to check my balance and while that process was entirely automated I didn’t need to ask anyone how to do it I just decided I didn’t feel like walking down to the bank, sat down and called. This is some serious improvement from panicking and refusing to call anyone!
I have phone issues at school relating to my voicemail, and have to put my number back home on all of my applications. Recently, I’ve been asked for interviews for two separate jobs, and both left messages at home, which were then relayed to me. The result is that I’ve had to call people I don’t know. I wrote scripts so I didn’t stutter, and asked my parents for advice (including for how extensions work, since I’ve never had to call one). All in all they went great. It still took a while to force myself to call, and I’m using crutches, but that’s definitely progress.