Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Don't Invite Them to the Party

A few years ago, a movie came out called "Dinner With the Schmucks." I only saw the trailers but I chose not to see it as it seemed to revolve around inviting someone played by Steve Carrell, to attend parties and whose antics and misbehavior would make everyone feel uncomfortable. ***Whether this was the ultimate plot, I couldn't say, but that's how it was advertised to me.***

So why bring it up? Well, over the holiday I was chatting with my brother and brought up a topic that made me upset, and his retort, with a straight face was "You see what you did there? You invited them to the party." I stopped dead in my tracks. Yes, we were having a great time, I hadn't seen him in six months and I had let something that was unpleasant and negative "join" our party.

As an Event Planner, I have had to deal with my fair share of uninvited guests and party crashers that have made the mood unpleasant for others. We had one girl who like to hoard cocktail napkins and later set them over a candle. Instead of enjoying the rest of the wonderfully well-behaved guests, I was having to keep tabs on this girl the whole night to make sure she didn't cause a disturbance or a fire!

The same is true of inviting unwanted thoughts, conversations or topics into the time we spend with those we care about. We focus on the troublemakers rather than the gracious people that are around us, cheering us on, toasting life's accomplishments, dancing to the music.

So what better way to remind myself to not invite negative speak or stressful topics into my life then by "Not inviting them to the party?" This works for me!

But it might not work for everyone, so I am happy to share another suggestion from one of my colleagues:

He told me that every night when he arrives home, he pauses, places his hand over the numbers on his house, and that's where he checks all the stress of the day. (See all these great guys with such wonderful insight!) Whether it be work, traffic, whatever, he leaves it outside and enters his home with serenity and happiness. I'm honored to be a part of planning his wedding in just a little over a month, and feel like his bride-to-be is lucky to have a husband that sees the value of letting whatever stressful things may have happened in the day not interfere with their time together.

I think it's important for all of us to have that secret password or gesture that forbids all negative things from crossing the threshold in to our happiness, relationships and peace of mind. What have you found that works for you? Please share your suggestions in the comments below.

Perhaps a little musical inspiration for kicking those party crashers out:

Ray Charles and British Schoolchildren singing "Hit the Road, Jack"


  1. Well spoken, Duke.

    I like to repeat the phrase, "there is never a good enough reason to be angry." While this is spoken in thought, and it does sound a bit like denial, it works for me constantly.

    Also, if I find myself losing patience with someone, I just pretend they are my mother or grandmother.

    Another song you could recommend is "Uninvited" by Alanis.

  2. I also pretend frustrating people are your grandmother. Weird! =)

    Thank you for your comment. I agree with your phrase and will keep it in mind in case I need a reminder, or I will just call you and hear it in person. Hugs!

  3. This is something I so need to remember. Our feelings are really influenced by our thoughts. It's out responsibility to steer them in the right direction.

  4. This is AWESOME advice! What a great way to stay positive!

  5. I LOVE what you said about having a secret password or gesture to keep things from crossing the threshold of our home and our happiness. I'm going to work on mine!