A while back I had the greatest date night …without having a date. I went to a singles event, this one called Paint Nite and met some really interesting people. One person I dated and we’ve since moved on, but it was fun time the whole way with someone who had similar interests to me. What I’ve learned is that “to meet people I want to meet, then I have to go to places where those people are”.
So first, let’s take out the obvious destination, bars. When I am at a bar I seem to find people who want a drink and maybe they’ll find someone to talk to. I think I would rather find people I want to talk to and then maybe have a drink.
I had fun before doing what I liked, so I just need to find an event/group/gathering that attracts the kind of people I might like to meet. Why do events work for me? Because the event is bigger than I am, I can get lost or found as I choose, and if I meet someone, finding something to talk about is easy – talk about the event.
My friends say that “good relationships are work”. But it didn’t seem like much work when I met that person at Paint Nite. So what’s the work? The work is finding people of like minds that you want to have a relationship with. And if you have no idea what your mind likes, follow the steps anyway – enlightenment will come to you.
Search tips to find where the people are at: Find the bulletin boards where the listings are, concert flyers, pottery classes, figure painting, outdoor photography clubs, etc. If you cannot find anything interesting where you live, search larger – go to websites from larger cities and see what they offer and then search your local area for similar activities. A well-established listing of these events are here: www.meetup.com or search “popular events” on www.yelp.com or peruse Yahoo Groups which runs the largest collection of already established groups and information.
A little preparation before you go. If possible, before the event, scout out the venue and see what people are wearing, age groups, any supplies people bring, parking, etc. Then, when you get there:
1> First, be an interesting person in support of the event. Don’t complain for focus on what doesn’t work or how you expected something else – if you like it, be happy. If you don’t like it, stay until you do, or just leave right away. Please, for the sake of all those other people having fun, don’t rain on their parade, you will not feel good about that negativity later.
- Homework: remember the guyMystique saying: “When you’re out for a night of having fun, you can never pay too many cover charges.” Translated, if it’s not happening where you’re at, then move on, regardless of the cover charge you just paid. It’s the value of your time, not your wallet that is important!
2> When asked what you do, the answer is not “what you do at work”. Answer anything from Mountain Biking to Book Reading. Everything is more interesting than work, so think about something you love to do and it will show people you actually have a life!
- Homework: if you can’t think of anything interesting you do outside of work, then go to these events every week. After several weeks you can at least say you go to these events every week! Now that’s a good opener for a conversation.
- If you’re shy: Take those first steps to show up at these things alone. If it feels good, even for ten minutes, then go again. Sooner than later you’ll meet someone with similar interests, and then you can get them to go to those other places on your list.
Show up! Yes, 90% of life is being there, and if you are not there then somebody else’s life is just going have that special accidental meet up with someone else, but not you. A sad loss for the rest of those people at the event – just waiting for you to show up. Think big, go far!!
Post by Geoff LaPlace