Tuesday, October 14, 2014

What to say when someone invites you to something in college


Let me explain. 

Last week I woke up in such a good mood. It was just one of those days where you actually feel motivated and energized. I work like I feel that way every day, but I don't always feel that way. Today I did, and on days like that I don't like to be alone. 

So I texted a friend whom I know has some flexibility in her day (she's a college professor) and asked her if she wanted to meet me for tea that afternoon. I didn't have a car that day so I needed her to drive pretty far to come pick me up. I didn't think she'd be able to, but I had to ask because I really needed someone to bounce all the energy and ideas I was having off of. 

To my surprise, she said she'd head over soon to pick me up!

When I got in the car, I told her how excited I was that she just said yes, and she told me this:

"I made a rule for myself in college that anytime someone invites me to something I should just say 'yes,' and I still use that rule today."

I love this!

And okay, so of course there are exceptions. I'm not talking about dating or parties or doing anything dangerous or any other kind of other college shenanigans. ;) 

Nor am I saying you need to say "Yes" to everything. You don't need to do everything in college. But when someone first invites you to something, you should make it a rule to say yes. The "rule" part helps re-train your brain that's probably conditioned to say 'no.' Your brain says, 'new is scary,' and 'routine is safe.'

And once you there it doesn't mean you have to keep saying yes - yes to the friendship, yes to joining a club, etc. But if you don't say yes initially, you'll never know what you might be missing. 

This is especially for all the commuters out there:

Stop going to class and going home!

When someone invites you to a club meeting or event, say yes and go.

When someone invites you to lunch or coffee, say yes and go. 

And if no one is inviting you, start inviting other people until someone says yes.

Don't take the no's personally, but don't be the one who's saying 'no' either.

Nine times out of ten you may not have a life-changing wonderful time. But you create opportunities for that one time that changes everything. That new best friend. That club you become an officer in that wins you a scholarship or gets you into your dream transfer university. That really fun time in college that you'll talk about for decades to come. That idea you get from a great conversation. 

When I started community college I just went to class and went home too. I didn't know there was more.

Then a girl invited me to a Phi Theta Kappa meeting. 

I said yes. 

I became an officer. Then President. 

At one of our Phi Theta Kappa meetings I learned about the Jack Kent Cooke Scholarship.

And then I won it - $110,000 that paid for my bachelor's degree and master's degree. 

That would have never happened if I'd said 'no.'

Don't wait until you're not scared or it seems easy - because you might be waiting for ever.

Just say yes.

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