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raw authenticity and a huge mirror

By October 20, 2008April 13th, 2010How To, Marketing, Networking,

Last week, I went to my monthly women’s networking event. Because I so love what I do, I enjoy these events thoroughly (really, can you believe I never tire of talking about myself?) This particular event was called ‘speed networking’ – a whirlwind of loudness as we all shouted our greatest hits to each other within the allotted 5 minutes. That said, I made several strong contacts…one in particular.

She’s in the business of Innovative Entertainment Marketing (independent, cause-themed films), and as we talked, we realized we had some very strong outside links to each other that ended up making our tête-à-tête more of a reunion than a first meet. We also have a mutual close friend that has been talking us up to each other for months, so we already felt like we knew each other.

Raw Authenticity

Anyway, when she found out what I do (copywriting, marketing, blogging, social media – in case you forgot), she said immediately, “I need to hire you. I hire bloggers/writers for every film.”

And then, I hugged her.

At the time it was a totally natural response, raw authenticity. Our conversation had been one big love fest. She hugged me back, we were all giddy, the conversation continued.

But, when I got into bed later that night…it started to nag torment me. Why did I hug her? What was I thinking? The voice over of the video playing repeatedly in my head (what I imagined the recipient of my hug must have been thinking): ‘Julie Roads is so desperate for work she actually hugs people that consider hiring her.’

Let’s have a realty recap: 1. I almost have more business than I can handle – but, hey – nice insecurity, Julie! 2. I was hugging her because it was my reaction to another notch in our ‘look at all that we have in common’ belt. 3. She hugged me back and kept on talking about the work.

A Huge Mirror

I woke up the next morning to a new voicemail, not from my huggee, but from a woman that I had serendipitously met a week earlier. Long story short: her family was playing on our community playset, we started talking, she got very excited when she heard about my work, took my card.

Her voicemail message was a bit of a love letter: “…have read your site and your blog, everything is so amazing, can’t wait to work with you, we met at exactly the right time…” We talked a few hours later and the love fest continued. In fact, she told me she had a crush on me and the idea of all that we would do together.

Now that is raw authenticity. No holds barred. She didn’t mean that she literally wanted me. Just that everything was converging in her life, I was a final piece, she couldn’t get over the synchronicity – her glee felt like a crush. More or less, she leapt through the phone and gave me a hug.

And as the receiver of this hug, it felt great. I found myself admiring her ability to be so authentic, not thinking she was a desperate, psychotic freak.

And then, I got it. There is it was, like a big, huge mirror right in front of my face.

So? I embraced my hug from the night before, and then, I let it go. It was just me being me, after all.

Join the discussion 10 Comments

  • Julie!
    Too funny! SO glad I could hold up that mirror for you & SO glad you can see the gorgeousness of what it holds! This ride is TOO MUCH FUN already!

  • How about when the “hug” is a… kiss? And not just a peck on the cheek variety, but an almost-on-the-lips type of exchange… but it’s not really an exchange, because it wasn’t at all anticipated. Know what I mean? This happened to me Saturday evening at a local bar. My husband and I were having a couple of beers when a bartender I know from another bar (hmmm… I guess I hit a lot of bars) began telling our current bartender how much we (as in she and I) have in common, how we both bartended and waitressed our way through college… etc… which we had discussed on a number of occasions, but her “authenticity” was both heartwarming and very surprising. I asked my husband if my surprise at her kiss was evident. He assured me that the kiss was well-received… but not quite a promise for more!

    I love this post!

  • Julie Roads says:

    Thanks for stopping by Sarah…our synchronicity continues! You are the best.

  • Julie Roads says:

    Hi Sharon! That is a great story…a bit different than mine!!! But still – hysterical and apropos – great that your husband was there to witness!

  • Moms At Work says:

    I am so not a touchy-feely person so I giggled out loud when I read that you HUGGED her. That is such a great story!

  • Julie Roads says:

    Thankfully, she was!

  • Ron Miller says:

    That was a great post, Julie. It feels so great when somebody wants to work with you and I think your reaction was completely normal. People who write for a living are inherently insecure. It just goes with the territory that we have periods where we think that we are not good enough or cannot live up to our impossible self-imposed standards. So when someone comes along and is really excited to work with you, it’s like Sally Field when she won the Oscar. “I can’t deny the fact that you like me! You like me! ” It’s a great feeling isn’t it?

    Ron Miller
    By Ron Miller

  • Heather says:

    What a great read! I laughed out loud at the desperate and hugee moments.

    I want to say more, but feeding baby & 1 hand typing.

  • Julie Roads says:

    Now that is raw TALENT! Thanks for stopping by! I think my babes will be writers because they nursed to sound of me typing quite a bit!

  • bklein34 says:

    I thought this was a great post. Enthusiasm is never the wrong response. Obviously you have good instincts and that’s why sometimes you’re the hugger and sometimes you’re the huggee. While hugs aren’t for every interaction, when you can tell in your gut they’re ok, they’re ok.

    I learned a long time ago that you will have the most satisfying level of success — professionally or personally — if you are genuine and true to what feels right.

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