Posted by Mitch Mitchell on Dec 5, 2010
Strange looking question for a Sunday morning, but there’s a purpose to asking it.
I have different levels of friends and associates in my life. In a way, it’s like a funnel, where the smallest part is populated with maybe 4 or 5 people, it goes up slightly from there to the next level, and at a certain point it widens greatly because there are many people I’m friendly with that aren’t exactly my friends; at least I don’t see them that way.
Yet, all of them are a part of my personal community. Every single person fills a need of mine in some fashion, whether it’s a business contact, an email contact, or a familiar face if I show up at a networking event. Every person helps to determine my sociability in different circumstances.
Probably like a lot of you, I’m easily more social online than offline. I don’t go to a lot of parties. I don’t go to a lot of networking events. I determine mentally what’s going to be beneficial for me versus what’s going to be uncomfortable for me. If I’m invited to a party where I may not know anyone except the host, I’m probably not going unless it’s a friend of my wife’s. If there’s a networking event and it’s not at a neutral site, I’m probably not going. In both cases, it’s because I know I’m going to spend significant parts of the event by myself, off in some corner or along some wall just observing what’s going on. And if I’m going to do that then I’d rather just find a seat at the mall; lots more to see.
But I do know people who can step into any situation and suddenly be the life of the party. They’re the ones who are missed when they don’t show up for an event. I’m not that guy.
At least in the regular world. Online, it’s a different story. At a birthday party for a friend of mine that was held at a bar two weekends ago (I don’t drink, and they didn’t have food; ugh) I was asked by one of the folks who follows me on Twitter if I ever went to bed, and how I can keep up with so much data that flows on Twitter even hours later.
I hadn’t realized anyone was paying attention. It seems that, online at least, there are times when I am missed; that definitely throws off some previous thoughts of mine that no one would really miss me if I went away for a period of time, the blog notwithstanding.
So, I’m now kind of acknowledging that I must have a larger personal community than I had imagined; how weird is that? What about you? How do you feel your personal community flows? It is bigger online than offline? How does it differ? And while you’re thinking about that, imagine being a part of this type of community:
Posted by Mitch Mitchell on May 2, 2010
Most people are going to think this is an easy question to answer, but I’m here to tell you that most people are deluding themselves, unfortunately.
Zig Ziglar says that, and I’m paraphrasing, positive thinking won’t allow you to do everything, but it will allow you to be better at everything than negative thinking. He’s one of the most positive people in this country and has been pushing out this message for more than 40 years. Here’s a guy who went bankrupt twice, yet found his way to the top of his profession, which is sales, and is one of the most sought after speakers in the country. If you don’t know about this guy you’re missing something.
When you think about positive or negative personalities, you don’t have to think in absolutes. No one is positive every moment of their life. No one is positive every moment of their day. Being positive doesn’t mean you can’t complain about something, or point out bad things. What it means, however, is that you have the ability to determine how you’re going to let it affect you over the course of your day or over the course of time.
For instance, I hate racism with a passion; I would, obviously. The United States is a racist country; heck, that’s not anything new, because truthfully every country in the world is racist in some fashion, so we’re not alone, and we’re not even at the top of the heap. I could easily walk around with a chip on my shoulder being angry at “the man” for holding me back, and blaming everything bad that happens to me on racism. And trust me, I know there are a number of things that happen to me that are based on race.
Instead, I tend to go a totally different route in my thoughts. Whereas I know racism exists, I also see the opportunities for breaking down some barriers here and there. I see that people of color aren’t allowing things to hold them back; at least not all of them. I see that people of color are achieving things that wouldn’t have been possible even 30 years ago, and that’s saying something. As I watch the news about Arizona’s stupid immigration bill, I not only see Latino people protesting, but a host of white people, often more of them that Latinos, protesting as well.
I also tend to believe that most people are inherently good, and that good things will happen for all of us. That I do it without any religious belief astounds some folks, but hey, that’s me. I do believe in the laws of attraction, though, and that we tend to bring on what we think, and who we hang out with helps determine where we’re going to go in life. I treat everyone fairly, and everyone gets the benefit of the doubt until they’ve proven themselves to be untrustworthy.
Two days ago I had another consultant tell me on the phone that I was too nice. It’s an interesting thought, and actually it’s funny because I often think our friend Sire is too nice. What I’ll believe instead is that we’ve decided to be more positive and inclusive than negative and obtrusive. We’ve decided that we want people to interact with us in a positive manner than in a negative manner, even when we might be calling someone out (that Sire is a trip!).
Back in March I asked what kind of friend are you, and some of the responses indicated that some of you like to stick to yourselves. You kind of missed the point of the question. I was basically asking if you believe people want to be around you, and if they do why. Except in networking meetings, probably because people sense I’m kind of tense, I tend to draw people to me. People talk to me all the time; I meet people who start telling me their issues almost immediately; it’s freaky. Babies are drawn to me; they stare and play with me all the time. Older women are drawn to me, and many of them comment on my eyes; I don’t quite get that one. Shy people are drawn to me, and people in trouble are drawn to me. I’ve always figured that if I were a negative personality overall, that wouldn’t happen.
So, with a bit more fleshing out of the topic, which personality do you consider yourself to be, and why?
Posted by Mitch Mitchell on Mar 14, 2010
Changing up for a minute on what I hope will be a great Sunday, but I’m hedging my bets.
Have you ever thought about which friend you are to most of your friends? For instance, are you the pretty friend, the funny friend, the movie friend… which are you? You can’t be the best friend for everyone, or maybe you can; is anyone that friend?
To tell you the truth, in my dreams I was always the good looking friend, the one who, when I walked into a room, women gasped because of my presence, Unfortunately, that one wasn’t happening; that was relegated to my friend Felipe. Not often you’ll see me write something like this, but he was a pretty man that women just fawned over. He had the body for it, the smile for it, and he was also a great guy. There was no hating him, and I used to smile each week out at the dance club because she he walked in, women’s heads turned, and guys who had a rap going suddenly noticed the women they were talking to weren’t paying attention anymore. And he always made the “guy” rounds first before letting everything else take place as it was going to; he was just that kind of guy.
I think I’ve changed as time has gone on. In high school, I was the “play” friend, the guy who was always ready to play any sport you could think of. In college, I was the protecting friend, the one who made sure everyone was safe and would step in and take care of problems as needed. These days I’m the smart friend, the one who probably knows at least a little bit of something about lots of things, current or not.
So, which friend are you, or that you believe you are? If you need some time to think, watch this little video, Muppets again, about friends: