Tuesday, January 26, 2016

26. I'd like you to like me

I'm a people pleaser. Whenever I'm with a crowd of people I know, I scan the room making sure everyone is enjoying themselves. I like to include people in games, in conversations, in other random gatherings. I think I was taught it at an early age and it's just stuck with me. I hate seeing people left out or unhappy.

I'll admit that doing that doesn’t always make me happy. I get offended if people leave places early without accepting my offers of help. I write off people who weren’t wooed by my charming customer services. After I strike out with a girl, I tell myself, “Well, it’s their loss.”

And while I really enjoy saying yes to things, especially in the dating world, you don’t always have to be pleasing people.

Case in point, this past Saturday I attended a meeting at the Basilica regarding a refugee family the church is sponsoring. It’s an exciting project and one I am eager to get involved with. I also know that I’m not going to be able to throw myself into volunteering anytime day or night. I still live about 45 minutes from Minneapolis and I don’t really enjoy doing things on weeknights.

So I’ve been trying to stick with the “bite less, chew more” philosophy that a lawyer told me about. Make your impact, but don’t let it take control of you.

I volunteered to do some writing for the committee. I said I would help write copy for the web page and possibly the bulletin. Another woman tried to cull me into helping write for their committee, but I said no. It felt good. I was making a noticeable contribution, but I wasn’t trying to do everything. (Which often happens with me.)

Today I was offered to be set up with a girl. Usually my policy is to say yes. While this girl seemed really nice and cute, I politely told the matchmaker that I wasn’t interested. The girl lived about an hour away. She was also out of my preferred age range of dating partners. While there is a part of me that is second-guessing my decision, I also know that being realistic is a big part of this falling in love thing as well.

I’m not going to enjoy driving an hour to see someone. It’s just not feasible. It’s probably better that I admitted that right away instead of trying it out and seeing what comes of it. No use in trying to make someone happy when you’re not happy yourself.

Things will line up how they are supposed to. That’s been the lesson of my post post-college life. It’s good to be open to new adventures, but you don’t jump out of an airplane without a parachute. Being accepting to new things is one thing, but being ready for them is a whole different thing.

Man, I’m sounding like a grown up or something. Excuse me while I go eat a whole box of Cap’n Crunch.

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