The joy of being totally accepted

A fantastic evening with wonderful pals at NSW Chamber. Accepted there and feel the love.

A fantastic evening with wonderful pals at NSW Chamber. Accepted there and feel the love.

My business has totally changed for the better in the last 18 – 24 months. I have totally awesome clients (thank you everyone), my online community is working and these days I go to real quality events that I am thankful for.

With reflecting on great conversations with my awesome wife, Mark Kyte, Eliza Rozeboom, Martha Arifin, Natalie Goldman, Chris Waters, Laura from Fairy La La Land and also Dai Le for this one – it got me thinking about the events we go to and the communities in which we interact (thank you!)

When we go out to networking events (or run our own), they are communities of their own. Even if it’s just 5 of you, 50 or 500 – it’s a community with it’s out set of principles, values, norms and expectations.

I have been in many different communities in my business life and I have even been a core character in places where they have had a mixed view of me. That is, they didn’t ‘accept’ me shall we say, but they ‘tolerated me’.

A very good example is a community that I was heavily involved with. They totally respected my skills, appreciated the actual help I was giving them but they did not actually like me as a person (which was quite obvious in their behaviour). As I was delivering great results in another end, they defaulted into the type of thinking which was:

– We have to put up with X person and what we don’t like about him / her because she / he is bringing us a lot of value in other areas.

I bet you can relate to this and it got me thinking on what the actual difference between these two concepts. We often hear about ‘tolerance’ and this and that, so I thought I would hit awesome Wikipedia to investigate this more:

– Tolerance or toleration is the state of tolerating, or putting up with, conditionally.

I then and went and checked out acceptance on awesome Wikipedia and came up with:

– Acceptance is the experience of a situation without an intention to change that situation.

Talking in pure Sydney street speak, if you are tolerated – it means people are putting up with you and don’t really like you deep down (even if they pretend to be your pal). If someone accepts you, it means they think you are awesome and fully appreciate you. This got me thinking on all the communities I have interacted with and how many have actually accepted me. It’s actually not that many, but it’s the high value ones with respectful people that accept me.

Ironically, I have found the lower value communities are the ones that haven’t accepted me. The ones with people of power and influence have.

Over the years, I have learned that we must be careful where we go and we need to ensure that we are fully accepted into communities we choose to partake in.

If we are only tolerated, it’s a safe bet that you will get used, get very little in return and eventually end up squeezed out when they have no value for you anymore. This has happened to me several times actually and as a warning it’s something I am careful to scan around me.

My advice and thinking?

Make sure you give respect and accept others first. Make sure you are truly accepted into the communities you go into. If not move on.

Parramatta Chamber, Hillsong, NSW Business Chamber, Salvation Army British Chamber, the Novotel ACCOR team etc for example have welcomed me with open arms and I totally love it. It’s positive energizing and awesome.

If you are in communities which you know are tolerating you, be careful! I would suggest you have a limited shelf life there – so at least move on your own terms. In several situations I overstayed my welcome and just ended up getting kicked out. Great if I moved on earlier.

Love your work, thanks for the read, stay awesome and appreciate it.

P.S. Thank you friends for your great input to make me think of this!