I wonder if AA coined the term “sharing” for talking. We “share” our experience, strength and hope with each other. In other contexts I believe this would be more “telling stories” or “telling you about myself.”
I hate talking at AA meetings or most other places, especially when the attention of a group of people is on me and they are mostly listening to what I’m saying. I still, after all these years, experience a pounding heart and rising anxiety as my turn approaches. In meetings where there are no turns, and people either raise their hands to just start speaking, I do not say anything at all. Truly, the social anxiety of trying to be called on and not being called on, or the moment when two people try to speak at once, prevents me from talking.
Which is OK with me. I usually feel like anything I have to say has been said before, and said better. I cringe when I sometimes hear the same people say the same things over and over and over again. I don’t want people to cringe when they listen to me.
I do almost always say something when the meeting takes turns going around the room, or when people are called on by name or some other way, and it’s my turn. I do this mostly for me, because I know that if I don’t do that, I won’t hardly ever speak at meetings. For years, when the meeting or two that I go to uses the just speak out method, or the hand raising method, I don’t talk in meetings at all.
There are a thousand reasons I know I should talk at meetings. But there are also a thousand people I think should probably not always talk at meetings. Really.
We are all just really, really, really really lucky that I am not the arbiter of what should and what should not go on at AA meetings.