Showing Up, Saying Yes

The Kansas City Direct Marketing Association (KCDMA) hosted the AMBIT Awards last week. A bodacious time. It's fun every year. So why is it that without fail, about three days before the wing ding, I start to dread going? I don't do it as much as I used to, but do you know what I'm talking about?

It's not just this event. Lunches, parties, coffee dates, conferences. And I'm a social sort.

It's human nature. Other friends who are very responsible, professional folk say they often feel that way, too.

What gets me over the hump and cuts my whining short is when I stop and realize how much respect I have for people who show up when they're invited. How much I admire the busy people who say "yes" when invited to coffee with a stranger or when they drop in on the happy hour, smile, laugh and enjoy themselves for an hour then leave.

It's fun. It's allowing the space for serendipity in your life and getting out of your comfort zone once in a while. Not that you can't, or shouldn't, say no to the things you really have no interest in or time for.

But if you don't show up—if you don't say yes more than you say no—you're leaving a lot of good times, new friends and new knowledge on the table.