Have you ever been to a networking event around happy hour? You’re expected to have a glass of wine or a beer. A water predisposes the non-drinker to judgements of being vanilla, or bland, boring.
It may seem like I care about what others think about me too much, and maybe I do. But, my business’ success hinges on its and my reputation. If people don’t like and trust me, they won’t do business with me. See where this is going?
One of my favorite nights out is going to wine tastings. My husband and I are part of a group that meets monthly, and while I can still smell the wine and sample the food, I’m hesitant to go and meet Mr. and Mrs. Judgy McJudgerstein. I can hold my own, so I’m not actually worried about meeting the McJudgersteins, although I know they’re there and will need to keep in mind that every decision I make not only reflects on me (and my business), but also on my parenting.
My husband and I are on a business/pleasure trip that’s taking us through parts of Europe, the Middle East and Asia. We’ve had this trip planned for about a year, and so far, so good. Prior to leaving, I had a couple of conversations with the McJudgersteins’ cousins. They asked if I’d actually taste sake while in Japan, the food in China, if it was safe for me to fly, if I would cancel the day in Cairo (since women in Cairo don’t get pregnant?), and so on. We didn’t change our trip plans, however I brought a list of cuisine and activities to steer clear of, but it made me think about how I need to be even more diligent about my decisions when pregnant than before.
Now there’s another human depending on me.
And there are heaps of others watching and waiting.