I pushed myself out of my comfort zone yesterday and it was a beautiful thing. I was instantly transported back to a time when I started inviting people into my world and the response was overwhelmingly positive.
This is where one must never keep score. I could tally up the invitations sent and the response rate. But I won't. What I must remember and focus on, is the immediate response of those who were ready to simply say "Yes!"
It was intoxicating. I asked. They said yes.
Unfortunately, "yes" came too quickly to one person and they had to rescind their initial answer. So we are presently in the mode of trying to find the best date for the most people. This is where it gets harder.
I set a date, a place and a time. I was concrete in my invitation. Then when the votes started coming back, I turned all wishy washy. I am being reminded of the reason why I stopped sending out these invitations. It gets hard when one tries to please everyone.
I believe that is part of the reason I started preferring to live life spontaneously. "Do you want to go out for coffee right now?" That is a very easy yes or no answer. "Do you want to meet for coffee a week from Tuesday at 7:00 p.m.?" My immediate thought is "I don't know. I don't know. I don't know!!"
Unfortunately, when you attempt to gather more than two people (or even meet up with one one busy person), spontaneity is usually not a viable option. In order to feel success in your mission, you must cast a wide net, provide options, tally the responses then pick the place, the date and the time according to those answers. It gets complicated.
I like options.
I issued another invitation last week. It was an invitation with a few options. It was a "let's pick a date and give ourselves a few choices and back out clauses". Setting the date was key. We set the date and let the rest of our plans fall as they may. Our plans were contingent on good weather so we made a "Plan B". Our "Plan B" was a flexible and last minute option. I just received the call back on that very plan and it is a go.
We will head out today and our outing has a feeling of "being where we are meant to be". I like that feeling.
In the meantime, I will sit back and tally up today's responses and reissue a revised invitation at the day's end.
It was almost intoxicating to read those initial responses. "It's so nice to hear from you! We have been thinking of you lots recently..."; "Yes!!!!!"; "I'm soo glad you reached out..." Even those who were unable to make it were grateful for the invitation.
I must focus on the gratitude, the excitement and the mutual desire to reconnect and stay connected. It isn't about keeping score. It is about maintaining connections.
Whew! There for a while I was focusing my energy on the wrong things. I felt defeated. Now that I've sat still and started remembering how good it felt to read those initial responses, I think it is time to try hone in on doing that which terrifies me.
It is time to invite more people back into my world. I will cast a wide net and focus the positive energy generated by simply opening myself up to the possibilities. It is hard. But it is necessary. I can do hard things.
If I ask them ... they may come. If I don't ask, I can be quite certain that they won't.