You may know what it feels like to not be invited to an event you desperately wanted to attend. It’s heartbreaking when our friends are giddy to attend a party that we’ve not been invited to. The feeling of rejection is painful, but the feeling of being forgotten about just might take the cake in terms of pain.
Being invited to events or outings feels good. Receiving an invitation makes us feel wanted, and indicates that our presence is interpreted as beneficial to the event we will be attending. If you prove that assumption to be a mistake, the likelihood of the same host inviting you to another one of their events lowers. Being a bad guest makes the people who invited you look bad, causes other guests to enjoy their time less, and damages the overall perception of the event you’re attending.
This article is about the dynamic between the host and the invitee. The dynamic which elicits painful feelings in those who aren’t invited to certain events, is related to the one that provides hosts with a sense of validity and power. Being a host of a successful event feels good. If the events we host turn out well, we feel like a provider of some sort. We feel associated with others’ positive experiences, with our name and face becoming associated with an enjoyable way to spend one’s time.
This article hopes to encourage you to take the task of being a guest at events seriously. Understand that you serve to gain from taking your job as a guest seriously, as it is a task which ultimately raises your social standing if done right. You will be invited to more events, and will be considered an asset to any social event down the line. The position of your presence being wanted in social domains serves to open up opportunities for you which would not be present otherwise.
Give Thanks for the Invitation
The journey of being a respected guest at any event begins with acknowledging the power dynamic between the host and the guest. By being invited to a certain event, you’ve been selected, and given permission, to attend. The act of selecting, and permitting, can only be executed by those who hold more power in that specified domain.
Thanking hosts for their invitation serves to positively acknowledge, and reinforce, the choice that the host has made in selecting you to be an attendee. Thanking them for inviting you, whether it be a dinner, a party, or a wedding, will be perceived as a sign of respect for the role which they’ve assumed in hosting you as a guest. It is a signal which communicates, “I acknowledge your role of importance in this place and time,” in a respectable and humble manner.
The host takes on more responsibility than the guest. They may have to cover the bill, plan for the catering to show up, or rent space for the outing in question. By thanking them for their invitation, you serve to remind those who’ve invited you that you’re aware of the role which they’ve assumed surrounding the specific event that you’re attending. By being respectful of, and sensitive to, their invitation, you reinforce their desires of being a person of importance at the event you’re attending.
Make the Host Look Good
In order to build on the respectable act of thanking your host for the invitation, your next point of focus should be on making the host look good. The host dictates the energy of any event that takes place. If the host holds a favorable opinion of you, then others at that event will too. A primary goal for you as a guest at any event, is to make the host look good. Do this not only when you’re around the host by responding favorably to what they do, say, and the ideas they present, but when the host is not around as well.
As you enjoy your time at the event you’re attending, be sure to compliment the host when they’re not around. Get a favorable opinion about the host going in the circle of people you’re surrounded by at the event. Mention how well the event you’re attending was planned, and how good of a job the host did setting up the venue. Though it may not seem like much in terms of raising your social value, the effect slowly grows.
The people around you will assume you to be close in social standing to the host if you don’t hesitate to make them look good. That energy will not only travel back for the host to appreciate, but the people around you will view you to be associated with the “house,” so to say. Other guests at the event will have difficulty determining what you have to gain by complimenting the host when they’re not in the conversation, and will be enticed to interpret you as simply a valuable guest to have at an event. This interpretation is a beneficial one to build, even if it’s owned by other guests of the event you’re attending.
Do not be flattering toward the host or act like a suck-up, but be genuinely complimentary and look out for the host’s image. A good guest makes the host look good. Publicly toast your host, thank them in private, and keep a positive light shining onto their image. Each event is unique, and is home to unique things to compliment. Try to place yourself in the shoes of the host of the unique event you’re attending to figure out specific areas to touch on, in order to make the host look good.
Make the Event Look Good
Next, attempt to present the sentiment that any event you’re a part of, is an event others should want to be a part of as well. Though it may seem narcissistic in a sense, you should treat your presence to be important to the overall quality of the event you’re attending. If you’re there, then that specific event raises in value. Do your best to make the events you attend look good. The simple trick to doing that is to make the people who attend the same events you do feel important for attending them.
Be social, be optimistic, and only try to express positivity during events you attend. Partake in all the planned activities, and be sure to do your part in having everything go to plan. Your goal as a guest is to make the event you attend play out in its best case scenario. Again, each event is different, but the role of the guest is often underappreciated in how successful events turn out to be. Assume the role of an assistant to the host, and do your part to ensure that everyone around you is having a good time. Include people who seem to be socially excluded, and be a catalyst for the good times.
People will recognize your role in making the event look good and enjoyable to be a part of. Though it may take some work physically and emotionally, your reputation to make the events you attend be enjoyable will quickly spread. You’ll be invited to more outings, and will grow your social circle.
Remember, a successful event is one which goes exactly as planned by its host, not as you desire it to be played out. What you may consider to be a good event may differ from what the host considers one to be. Thereby ensure you have a good understanding of the goals the host has set for the event they’ve given birth to. Act as an assistant to their plans and ensure the people who attend the same events that you do have a good time. Attempt to give birth to a fear of missing out inside the minds of those who are on the fence about coming, the next time you’re in attendance.
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