Open Source and Feelings Open Source & Feelings

Kat Toomajian

Kat Toomajian

From the Inside Out: How Self-Talk Affects Your Community

Identifying and discouraging negative self-talk is a simple thing, but it can have a huge impact on your community in a positive way. It increases self-confidence, improves morale, and generally results in happier, more productive community participants. This, in turn, will make you happy.

Negative self-talk is a pervasive, invasive, and unproductive way of thinking. It can trigger a cascade of things, from abandoned patches (“I am not smart/talented/good enough to figure this out”), to withdrawl from the community (“I screwed this up and everyone knows and hates me”), to general discouragement (“I suck, and have nothing valuable to contribute here”).

In this talk, I’ll discuss the various methods Dreamwidth and other organizations use to handle negative self-talk, and the best way to deploy those techniques. I will also discuss things to keep an eye out for in your community that may be at the root of this type of self-talk, and processes you can go through to eliminate them. Finally, there will be a quick overview of impostor syndrome, and the role it plays here.

Speaker Bio

Kat Toomajian works for Dreamwidth Studios as the head of support. She loves insurance, superheroes, historical hermeneutics, and bioethics, among other things. She lives in Minnesota with her two ferrets, Hermes and Isaac.