Now that I’m in the UK, the Brits tell me I won’t be allowed to leave unless we have a social meet-up here. So let’s make it so! Here are the details of our first-ever London meet-up.
Date: Sunday, May 19, 2013
Time: 2:00 pm (14:00)
Location: In the Royal Festival Hall of Southbank Centre, Level 2, in the seating area across from the Riverside Terrace Cafe. Riverside is literal in this case since we’ll be on the river side of the building on the South bank of the Thames, so you’ll see the river if you look out the windows from the meet-up area. This is a public indoor space (the building is open from 10am to 11pm), so there will likely be other people in the area who aren’t with our group. Look for Rachelle and me somewhere in this area, or watch for a gathering group of mostly 20- and 30-somethings. Here’s the exact location via Google maps. We’re a short distance from the London Eye.
There’s a snack bar near the meet-up spot, so you can get drinks and food there too if you wish.
Within the past few weeks, we’ve hosted meet-ups in Berlin and Amsterdam, each with 25-30 attendees. Since London is a much bigger city, it wouldn’t surprise me if we had a significantly bigger turnout here. Our biggest ever free meet-up was about 40 people in New York City, but that was back in 2007. So this one could potentially be a record-breaker.
A meet-up is a great opportunity to connect with like-minded people who share your interest in conscious personal growth. A comment I frequently hear at our meet-ups is: I had no idea there were so many people like me out there. It’s so great to connect with people who think like I do.
Sure you can “meet” people online, but it’s much more fun and fulfilling to get away from the computer and connect like a real human being. Share stories and laughs in person instead of reading comment streams. Hugs always beat smilies.
If you feel socially awkward, this is a chance to stretch yourself; feel awkward and show up anyway.
It isn’t unusual for a few people to travel from other cities (even other countries) to attend one of these meet-ups. Some people really like being around this kind of energy, even if only for a short time.
Usually our meet-ups last 2-3 hours, but our Berlin one lasted 6-7 hours, so who knows? As long as people want to keep hanging out, it’s fine to stick around. The building is open till 11pm. Of course you’re free to leave whenever you desire.
Meet-ups have no formal agenda. They’re purely social — a chance to meet other locals and make new friends. We basically hang out, move around, mingle, and talk about what interests us. These meet-ups are simple, but for the purpose they serve, simple usually works very well.
Quite often someone from each meet-up will create a Facebook group or gather people’s email addresses (totally voluntary), so those who wish to stay in touch afterwards can do so easily.
If you do come to the meetup, try to be there roughly on time. We don’t always stay in the same spot, so if you’re very late, we might not still be in the original location.
I normally prefer an outdoor meet-up location like a park — Regent’s Park had some beautiful spots — but the London weather has been so wonky that I’d rather play it safe and go indoors this time. Today it was sunny, cloudy, rainy, and cold/windy at different times of the day. I have no idea what the weather will be like at the time of our meet-up, but at least indoors, bad weather won’t be a problem. Of course another advantage of our indoor location is that they have public restrooms there (which can be scarce elsewhere in London).
If this meet-up interests you and if the location is accessible for you, please come join Rachelle and me in London, meet other locals, talk about personal growth, and make some new friends. And be sure to hug us when you see us — and hug each other too — none of that handshake crap!
Just be aware that I’m American, so according to my travel guide, there’s a high probability that you’ll perceive me as loud, obnoxious, impolite, uncivilized, superficially friendly, and a bit naive.
God save the Queen!
Update May 18th: I’ve been getting feedback from some people who are on the fence about going to Sunday’s London meet-up for various reasons, so let me make it easy for you to decide whether or not to go.
If you’re not sure if this will be worthwhile for you, if it seems too inconvenient, or if there’s something else you’d rather do at that time, then I’d recommend that you skip the meet-up.
Generally the people who go to these meet-ups are delighted to have the chance to connect with other like-minded individuals, and they wouldn’t want to miss it. For these people, the decision to go is pretty obvious and easy — they make it a priority to show up. They might feel a little nervous if they’re not sure what to expect, but they can intuitively sense that it’s important for them to be there. Quite often they experience synchronicities to validate this belief before, during, or after the meet-up.
These meet-ups work best when the people who attend are those who really want to be there. Quality of interaction is a lot more important than the quantity of people who show up. It’s nice to have a big group when possible, and I expect we’ll have a great turnout for London, but I’d rather connect with a dozen people who are delighted to go… as opposed to three dozen where 2/3 of them had to push or drag themselves to show up.
So if you’re going to go, then show up because you really want to meet and interact with other growth-oriented people in London. Please don’t bother going if you’re only capable of attending as social dead weight.
If you consider yourself an introvert or if you feel a bit shy about meeting new people, that’s no problem at all. Since everyone is there to meet new people, I think you’ll find it easy to connect. For the larger meet-ups, people usually break off into smaller groups and have conversations on specific topics that interest them, such as subjective reality, 30-day trials, sleep experiments, creating an online business, etc.
If Sunday rolls around and you’re still on the fence or if you just don’t feel motivated to go, I’d suggest staying home. By opting out when you’re hesitant to participate, you’ll be showing greater respect towards the people who genuinely desire to be there, giving them the chance to interact with other like-minded people who are equally inspired to connect and share.
There’s a special energy created when conscious, growth-oriented people come together and interact with a strong desire to connect. If you’re a match for that kind of experience, then you already know you’re going to show up. But if this sort of thing doesn’t inspire you, then please spend your time doing something that does inspire you, even if it means staying home and watching football.