Embrace the challenge: Meet 100 people in 100 days. Recently Fred S. sent me an e-mail. He had taken a workshop with me more than 20 years ago and he reminded me that I had asked them to embrace the challenge to meet 100 people in 100 days. I responded that I had no memory of this, but I liked the idea, and I too would embrace the challenge to meet 100 people in 100 days.
What is the purpose of this challenge? If you are an introvert, you will build your extrovert muscle. And for all of us — when we expand our circle, we expand our world. There are more people for us to help and more people who might help us. We expand our circle of influence. This is the opposite of being a hermit.
I started the challenge three weeks ago. I confess that I didn’t meet anyone new on the day I was glued to the TV, watching news about Hurricane Douglas. But I’ve done pretty well so far!
When I met one new person, Natalie, I told her about my challenge and she decided to accept the challenge too. I ran into her today and she said her boyfriend had also accepted the challenge to meet 100 people in 100 days. He mans a security gate in a gated community. It’s easy for him to say, “I’ve accepted a challenge to meet one new person a day. May I introduce myself to you?” He told Natalie that people get a kick out of it and seem flattered to be chosen.
If this idea intrigues you, but you feel stumped about how to go about it, here are some ideas:
1. Keep the purpose in mind: To expand your circle of influence.
2. Strike up a conversation with someone at the supermarket.
3. Sit on a bench in a downtown courtyard and say, “Good morning” to someone nearby. See where you can go with that.
4. At a bus stop, ask someone for information.
7 topics of conversation when you embrace the challenge to meet 100 people in 100 days:
1. The weather
2. Where they got that great face mask
3. Something flattering about their attire
4. A comment about a product in the vitamin aisle
5. A question about a nearby historic building
6. Information about a bus route
7. Your challenge to meet 100 people in 100 days
Guidelines for meeting 100 people in 100 days:
1. Use a friendly tone of voice and unassuming body language.
2. Introduce yourself, using your first name.
3. Be sensitive to how receptive they seem.
4. Keep a daily log.
5. Forgive yourself if you occasionally miss a day. Remember, this is a challenge, not a mandatory assignment!
Some of the people I’ve met so far:
~ Two teenaged boys taking a break from skateboarding. I approached them and sad, “This might sound strange, but I’ve accepted a challenge to meet 100 people in 100 days. Will you be two of them?” Casper and Oliver probably said to themselves afterwards, “That was a strange woman,” but I’m sure they didn’t feel threatened.
~ A young employee named Alexia at Honolulu Coffee. She’s spunky and playful and I like her a lot! We’re friends now.
~ A man taking a smoke break in the Capitol District. I struck up a conversation with him about the three nearby roosters who seemed compatible instead of competitive.
~ An elderly man sitting in the shady courtyard of my apartment building. He was listening to music on headphones and I asked what he was listening to. The Beatles! We laughed and gave thumbs-up.
For additional information about life’s challenges, please read my recent blog.