There are some pretty impressive Airbnb accommodations around the world. Castles in Scotland. House boats on the Seine. A suite in the St. Pancras Clock Tower. Places that a sofa bed in Chandler, Arizona can't even compare to.
But one of the perks about offering such simple accommodations is that you really get to know your guests—everything from what they're doing with their life to their shower schedule. I enjoy offering only a sofa bed because it's typically just a place to sleep in for my guests. They don't need to foot the bill for an entire hotel room because most of them are busy going through some kind of life change.
The past two guests I've had—Jake and Robert—were in the process of moving to the Phoenix area. Jake was originally from southern California, but spent the last few years traveling all over the world growing his product design and development business. That's unfortunately as well as I got to know Jake, as I was out of town for most of his stay.
I got to know Robert much better. He and his wife, Crystal, stayed with me previously on a trip to check out the area. Robert stayed with me again a few days last week to search for jobs and housing. My favorite part about hosting Robert was that he was always good for a laugh—whether he was telling a story about him and his college buddies or sharing Anjelah Johnson's nail salon skit.
I also loved hearing about what his goals and ambitions were. He wants to write a book with his dad, who is practically a legend of a golf coach at the University of California—having coached there for over 35 years. He shared one bit of wisdom from his dad that has always stuck with him, and I can understand why.
The sign of becoming a man is when logic and reason overcome emotion.
I find this relatable to growing up in general, man or woman. There comes a point when you realize making decisions based purely on your emotions won't get you very far in life. You notice that, in order to grow as a person, there are times you have to make difficult choices using reason rather than listen to the illogicality of your emotions.
I experienced this recently, regarding being an Airbnb host actually. When I first started hosting, I refused to host single men. I'll (embarrassingly) admit I was afraid of being molested in some way. Not that I inherently mistrust men, but inviting a strange man into sleep in my apartment put me on edge. After I turned a few likely innocent souls down, Airbnb's CEO sent out an email about not discriminating against guests and having an open door policy.
So, I decided to put my fears behind my discrimination and accepted my first single male guest. And a few more after that. I've never had a problem—everyone has lived up to the safe, welcoming culture that Airbnb fosters.
Had I not made that rational decision to eliminate my fear from accepting who I host, I would have missed meeting some wonderfully interesting people. I would have missed the gratification of being able to help someone who made the same life-altering move I did over a year ago.
And, most importantly, I would have missed out on the bottle of wine Robert was kind enough to give me for my hospitality.