Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Day 162 of 365: Just Letting It Go

Alright, so now would probably be a good time to talk about my frustrating back-and-forth with a particular karate dojo.

Once upon a time, the yoga studio I was working for was going out of business. I hit the ground running, trying to find a replacement studio/gym to work at. I had one huge thing going for me: there are very few tai chi instructors out there, and I was taught by someone who was born, raised, and trained in China, in traditional Yang-style Tai Chi. But I had one thing going against me: New Hampshire is White Town, America, and if the physical exercise isn't something western-friendly like karate, then you're in for it (even yoga has a rough go at it up here, as evidence by the yoga studio going out of business). So while I didn't have to worry about competition, I did have to worry about people being interested in the first place.

Enter this particular dojo. I contact them and get an immediate response. We meet, we talk about when a good time would be for a class... he shows me around the dojo and comes up with this great promotional idea for the class.

And then: radio silence.

No, it was worse than radio silence. I found myself having to send two emails out for every bit of communication: one email to say what I needed to say and another email to check in on the guy, wondering why he hadn't responded. Suddenly, the great promotional plan was completely petering out. It was very clear that the guy had no interest in my class anymore and was going through the motions. He kept going around in circles with me, often alluding to the fact that the idea of a tai chi class was getting such a tepid response on his Facebook page.

My last email was sent out last week, detailing a brand new plan for a new class in his dojo. I haven't heard back, and -- honestly? -- I hope I never hear back. This is an exhausting song and dance. And while I'm willing to deal with the frustrations because more classes = more money, sometimes you have to know when enough is enough. Much like many interactions in life, sometimes you have to recognize when you're getting a bum deal, when the person on the other side isn't holding up their end of the bargain, or is dragging you down, or doesn't reciprocate what they need to reciprocate, and just walk away.

Thankfully, I did end up finding a yoga studio to teach at. One meeting, a few emails, and everything was quickly put into place. The owner has even worked with me to help promote the classes and get people interested in trying out tai chi. There are definitely worse things to have happen to someone whose place of employment goes out of business.

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