I belong to a sewing club that donates to the community whenever possible. We had a very large donation sewing event at the beginning of the month and this week was our follow up meeting to discuss what could be changed, what could be better, what the takeaways are, and planning for future events.
This year I will be doing an FMQ demonstration at one of our monthly meetings. Communicating lots of information in a short period of time. And was volunteered for that. I am comfortable doing this and agreed as I have been doing this for years.
I was also volunteered to demonstrate a snap press that no one knows how to use. I have taken it home, done some research, made some suggestions for more dies and am waiting to give this demonstration.
I was also volunteered to teach a class on how to make an iron caddy tote. Since I do not have a pattern and winged it for my previous ones, this will be a bit of a challenge. Everyone wanted it. So again I agreed.
Thursday was our meeting. Because I forgot my camera, and I am responsible for updating the website (yes I volunteered to do this too) they decided it was necessary to purchase a camera as a club asset so if this happens again, anyone can grab the camera and point and shoot. I kept getting volunteered by others to research a camera. I turned that down, but they kept volunteering me.
And due to my class of the iron caddy tote which requires lots of materials, those were discussed and everyone wanted the kits pre-made up with all the stuff already done. All the batting cut/purchased, all the insulbrite cut/purchased, all the aluminized cotton cut/purchased. So, more pressure. But I kept getting volunteered to be the purchaser and kitter to make things as easy as possible.
They wanted me to research the dies/snaps/grommets for the snap press and because I started the ball rolling I agreed to this too.
I had turned in a donation quilt. No one in the group new that I was the one that turned it in. When asked by the sewing president everyone volunteered me again. I said no and was starting to notice that no one else in the group wants to educate themselves to educate others.
Predominately it was one person who kept saying my name over and over voicing her opinion on what she thought should be done.
Have you ever been volunteered to do something? It happens occasionally right? And because you have one task volunteered, you accept, no biggie. You put on your big girl pants and buck it up! But what happens when there is a group of 16 people who keep volunteering and using the same people over and over? I say if you don’t show up to the meeting you automatically get volunteered but then that would not be fair as I know all too much about the unsightliness of being volunteered too much.
The favorite part of the meeting is when we get to show and tell what we have made or what we are making. I am beginning to dread this part because every time I bring something, someone wants a workshop or demo on the subject. They want me to show them how to make a sweatshirt….they want me to show them how to make a denim purse, they want me to show them ________________ fill in the blank.
Now I communicated after the meeting, and after it hadn’t set well with me, and after I gave it much thought on how to handle this. I almost feel like I am a dog, and they are my masters. I was warned by a loved one that this would happen….he was right.
So I had to put my foot down and am very prepared for the next meeting. I told them when you have too many irons in the fire, one can spontaneously combust or burn out. To prevent that the volunteering of others needs to stop. Or, I told them the next favorable option for me was to quit. The next person that tries to volunteer me, I am going to turn it around on them and volunteer them and see how they like it. Treat others as you want to be treated. I am glad they see me as a valuable resource, but most of this stuff is on the internet and can be accomplished on their own. I don’t think I will be bringing anything else to show and tell unless it is extremely complicated. This group does not want to do those kind of crafts.
If you have any advice, I would love to hear it in the comments section. Soap box done.