Strangely enough, the conversation about the true value of stuff started during a group call when a student asked, “What about all of these business cards?” Years ago, she had a job that allowed her to meet a great many people and accumulate a great many business cards. She didnít actually know any of them but she was resisting letting them go. She said, ďI feel like these are connections, potential connections, and while Iíve never used them, and I donít know what Iíd use them for, I canít seem to make myself put them in the recycling pile.Ē
Sometimes we cling to things that no longer serve us because we have a false understanding of their value.
If a business card is the only connection between you and another human being, itís probably not enough for you to call the pair of you connected. If that encounter didnít result in something more substantial than a business card exchange, these tokens are rarely worth keeping.
Again, this process is about releasing that which no longer serves us and a business card has a pretty specific range of possibility and it narrows with every day that passes without action. If youíre going to be in touch, get in touch. If youíre going to add someone (with permission) to your professional mailing list, add them. If you made a useful connection, do whatever youíre going to do with it. Add that person to your address book and let go of that piece of paper.
Remember, releasing a business card that doesnít actually have any value for you doesnít mean the other person is going to vanish from the face of the earth. It doesnít mean you didnít meet them. It doesnít even mean you didnít think they were cool, or nice, or pretty. Recycling that tiny piece of paper just means there is nothing else for you to do with the information. Again for clarity, it means it doesnít actually serve you anymore. Its value has declined over time to the point that the space it occupies is of more value than the business card. Let it go.