Awkward & Upward

A Look at the Awesomeness of Awkwardness

Not too long ago, my husband came home from a work trip as giddy as a kid on Christmas. His love language is receiving gifts, so he gets really excited when he has the opportunity to give someone else the thrill of an unexpected present. On this night, he had one for me!

“It made me think of you!” he exclaimed as he handed over a Target bag. I reached inside and removed the tissue paper that was wrapped around his purchase until the big surprise was revealed — a mug imprinted with the saying Awkward Is My Specialty.

So right now you’re probably thinking, “awkwaaaaaaaard,” am I right? Because who wants their partner to think of them that way?!

Well… me actually! Because awkward is my specialty, and I’m on a mission to make you feel super awkward too.

Yes, you read that right. You see, the word awkward has gotten a bad rap, and it’s my hope that after reading this, you’ll be ready to embrace feeling awkward so you can start getting what you want in your life, career or business.


Sure, if you look “awkward” up in the dictionary, there are a few not-so-flattering definitions. Keep reading, though, and you’ll find it also means “uncomfortable,” and being uncomfortable can be a really good thing. (Unless, of course, it’s Thanksgiving Day and you ate too much at lunch and aren’t wearing stretchy pants cause you wanted that fashionable cousin you only see once a year to think you’re a fashionista too, but I digress…)

For instance, an awkward conversation can be productive, leading participants to better understand each other.

Similarly, getting out of your comfort zone and trying new things in the pursuit of your goals can lead to personal and professional growth. I call that moving “awkward and upward.”

Whenever you want to achieve something new — whether you’re ready to make a big change, launch a side hustle, train for an Ultra Ninja Marathon Expedition, make a career move, move somewhere new, go for a promotion or promote your own business — you’re going to have to embrace a little discomfort along the way.

Yes, it’s going to feel awkward putting yourself out there and going for a big goal. Yes, it’s going to feel weird not just knowing your strengths but unabashedly using them to get what you want. And yes, you’re going to have to do things that don’t feel natural at first as you grow personally, professionally or both. But all of this awkwardness will lead you to amazing things. After all, inside every awkward moment is an award. (Yes, that’s an awkward play on the word but isn’t that appropriate right now?)

I’ve experienced first-hand the “awards” that can come from getting outside of your comfort zone. (You can read my story by clicking here.) If you’re ready to get comfortable with being uncomfortable, grow personally and professionally and start achieving your biggest, scariest goals, then hop aboard the Hot Mess Express with me — your awkward best friend — and let’s journey awkward and upward together.

This post is from the Summer 2020 issue of Awkword Magazine


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