Thursday, August 26, 2010

The Disfunctional Art of Not Showing UP

One of my pet-peeves in life is the not showing up virus. As I mentioned in my last posting, I want to say a few words about this rampant disease that attacks young and old, is not gender, race, or religious specific, and can reek havoc on those depending on those who have agreed to SHOW UP in other words, RSVP's YES.

I recently encountered this problem when I signed up to be a Meetup facilitator and to hold monthly Creating Mandala Workshops. 18 people RSVP'd "YES," a bunch "Maybes," some "No's" and 3 on the waiting list. 7 people actually "SHOWED UP." Those on the waiting list missed out, because those that said they were coming didn't. So, what causes people to say yes to something and then change their mind, but not let the event organizer know? Does a better invitation come along? Do they get lost and turn around and go home? Do they lose interest? I know there have been times when I've changed my mind about attending something or I just didn't feel up to it, but I'm quite sure I let the organizer know and if I didn't shame on me.

I believe strongly in showing up. I guess because I was brought up when what others thought of you still mattered and manners and thank you notes were not considered an archaic act, that I realize how important it is to RSVP and follow through on that decision. Or, at least let the person know if you've changed your mind.

Showing up, is what it's about, someone said not that long ago. I can't remember who. But I believe it is true. It's like being habitually late to things. For my recent Meetup event, I was counting on 18 people coming, so I bought additional supplies, set up for 18 people, not 7 and even sent an email out asking people to please let me know if they weren't coming. A few people did change their RSVP's, but mostly, they just didn't show up!

I believe you never know what you will discover when you show up. You might make a new friend, you might meet a love interest, you might get a connection or lead for a great job, find a dependable dog sitter or a great lead to something you've been just don't know. But, if you don't show up, it is certain, you will miss out on some life experience. I met a woman at this meetup, who has generously offered her art studio for me to hold future mandala workshops! How cool is that.