Originally published on the Wistia blog as part of their Non Sequitur Fridays series. View the entire post here.
I just got back from Comic-Con International in San Diego, and I learned a lot. I learned that 3 margaritas are enough, that stormtroopers are surprisingly adequate dancers, and that I have a terrible weakness for baby cosplay.
Besides those things, I also learned a few important lessons we can all apply to life and work every now and then:
1. Great things happen when people feel like they belong.
One of the most striking things about Comic-Con was that everyone was pleasant, happy, and patient. Even with around 150,000 attendees clogging every pathway, crosswalk, and room in downtown San Diego, I didn't witness shouting or shoving.
Why is it that, for the most part, this classically stressful environment results in friendly folks en mass? Because they belong.
It's no wonder Maslow placed belonging before personal achievement on the hierarchy of needs, only after survival and safety: belonging to a group is incredibly powerful. It affirms your sense of self and augments your identity by being part of something greater.
For many, Comic-Con is the one time of year when they can walk around as their true selves and celebrate interests that, perhaps even because they're often kept private, are critical to their identity. Many different fandoms and communities converge on Comic-Con, yet they all have a shared appreciation for fandom itself. In many ways, they have a shared story.
As a result, Master Chief asks kidlet Iron Men for selfies, and Darth lets Pikachu cut in line. No matter their mask or fandom, they all belong.
Read on for more lessons from Comic Con at the full post here.