I’m not a bar guy. I don’t see myself socializing the night away while hitting on girls at the club. I’m just not wired like that. It’s hard to find much joy and attraction in events like these.
I remember once walking into a networking event all by myself at a bar in downtown Manhattan. It was packed to the brink, and there were drunk people sitting on the couches, talking nonsense. And everyone was gathered in their own group of friends. Chatting and having a good time. Which is nice.
And I was just by myself, not knowing what to do with myself. Whether to go grab a drink or just chat it up with a random stranger. That day, I decided to just leave then and there - five minutes into the event. I got nothing out of the event, and didn’t get any contacts to broaden my network.
Times like these will happen. When you take risks to go to a network event full of strangers, the hope is to meet more people and get a chance to network with people that are like-minded and looking for the same thing. However, unfortunately, that day, I came away empty-handed.
Oh well. It happens. Opportunity doesn’t come knocking at your door all the times. But, that’s just how it is. When I go to these networking events, I try to see the opportunity that I will encounter. The chance to meet new people. To see a new environment. To grab a drink and have a good time.
And I try to see that outweighing the supposed risks of the event. The possibility of feeling left out or empty-handed. The feeling of uncomfortableness when placed in a new surrounding.
And I tread on. I used to do this a lot to myself. I’d force myself to go to these networking events at bars or even clubs - even though I just did not feel in the right place at the right time at all. I’d feel out of sorts, a bit socially anxious, and not knowing what to do with myself.
But, I pressed on for the sake of that opportunity. The possibility of meeting new people. Of striking new friendships. Of simply being out of my comfort zone and cherishing it for what it is. I’d say it’s a challenge for me to say the least.
Some people don’t feel challenged at all when they go to clubs and bars. They feel right at home. Chatting it up with both friends and strangers and the like. Just having a ball. Not going home until the wee hours of the morning.
They are in their zone, and good for them. But, for me, it’s unfortunately just not the case. Bars are a thing to be dreaded at times. The need to socialize. To chat amongst different groups of people. Of trying to avoid those awkward silences. It’s just a handful for me.
The alcohol does numb the uncomfortableness, I have to admit. And that’s one thing that I look forward to. But in general, going to bars and clubs require a bit of effort and determination on my part.
Granted these days, it’s not possible to go to bars and clubs anymore because of the obvious pandemic raging across the land. But, back in the good old days, it was a challenge to say the least.
So, every time, I do something that is out of my comfort zone. That runs the risk of making me anxious, in pain, or even stressed out, I try to see the opportunity of the experience rather than the risk.
I try to see things in a positive light. Just like the good old days when I’d drag myself out to go to bars and clubs to socialize with friends. The opportunities are endless, if you think about it.
The possibility of sharing stories. Having a good time. Talking and chatting it up into the wee hours of the morning. Meeting someone new. Or simply having a good time out drinking. Checking out some place new. The opportunities are endless.
So, next time you are placed in a situation out of your comfort zone. Think about the opportunities and possibilities that that event has to offer. Think about what you can gain out of dragging your behind to do something that is clearly not in your comfort limit. Think about the pleasure instead of the pain.
The opportunities in this world are endless. We just have to see it to believe it.