I just spent $3000 and 3 days at a professional development conference in another part of the country. The speakers were top notch, the hotel was very nice and the food was actually good. And yet, here I am, on a flight I paid an extra $100 for, just so I could leave 8 hours early.
Why, you ask?
Because the group was not my tribe.
Have you ever been someplace and you thought to yourself “I would SO much rather be at home in my PJs than here, having this lame conversation.” That is how I felt during much of the conference. Not the whole time, of course. There were moments that I loved, times that I wished I could bottle for later, to swirl, sip and savor like a fine wine. Those moments were when I was talking with someone I felt a genuine connection to.
We all have a tribe. Even self-proclaimed introverts. Your tribe is the group who shares your same basic, fundamental values. You may disagree on certain things–even big things–but at the end of the day (or the end of the spirited argument!) you are still somehow connected by a mutual respect and affection.
I have found over the years that my tribe values and appreciates things like directness, honesty, humor, creativity and self-improvement. The people I most enjoy (and who most enjoy me) tend to be unpretentious and are OK with the idea that life can be a messy process sometimes. The crowd at the conference–and I freely admit that this is my perception–felt a bit status-oriented. To me, it felt the group was less inclusive and more exclusive. Not everyone fit this profile, of course. Many were what I would call heart-centered. And I had found them (or rather, we found each other). We connected. And then, I felt, it was simply time for me to go.
As I walked into the lobby of the hotel at 5:00 this morning to wait for my airport ride, I ran into one of the attendees I considered to be heart-centered. I asked her why she was leaving so early, when there was another full day left of the event. She said “I’ve had enough. I frankly would rather be at home in my PJs than have another lame conversation.”
I just smiled.
When you’ve found your tribe, you know it.
If you are looking for a tribe–a group you can resonate with and be yourself in front of, we need to talk. I am in the midst of putting together an alliance of like-minded women who are ready to see what else life has to offer. It’ll be a year of orchestrated and focused attention on what matters to you. No judgements, no fluff, no crap.
All you have to do is get yourself on my calendar. Tell me what is important to you and if there is a fit, I’ll invite you to join. Either way, I can almost promise you’ll have a little more clarity on what steps you might take to get some traction. Good conversations do that.