We’re all leaving one place and heading towards another. The journey requires that we set out on a path that will require a lot from us. In addition to the difficulties we face in starting a business, changing jobs, getting healthy or changing relationships we also feel the continual pull of gravity to return back to where we came from. We need a group of people who will not only help us navigate the journey itself but who will also fight gravity and beckon us onward towards our best life. For many of us this process of building a new network can seem daunting but there are five simple things that we can do to build our new support network.
Five ways to build a new support network
1. Introduce yourself to people
Find people who are already doing what you are wanting to do and just ask to connect with them. This isn’t the time for you to write them your life story but instead just a simple 4-5 sentence email stating why you want to meet them. We’ve continually found people so willing to meet up and connect. “You have not because you ask not” definitely applies to relationships so be brave and ask.
2. Connect with an existing group
We are tribal people and even though we may no longer wear tribal masks and beat drums until midnight we still gather in tribes. One of the most amazing part of the internet and social media is that it gives us space to gather in tribes. These tribes or groups are excellent places to build a network. There are Facebook groups built around nearly every subject (including ours), Instagram is great for connecting with individuals and for those in business LinkedIN is great. Don’t forget your existing group of friends also, most likely there are people within your network who are also on the same journey.
3. Join a learning group
Take an online course, join a gym class, sign up for a night class at the local college. There’s something magical about learning in a group. Runners join running clubs because it allows them to keep pace and not slow down. So join something related to your dream and watch as you’re encouraged, supported, and held accountable.
4. Attend a conference or event
Big events are great ways to meet people who share your similar interest. As you build your network on Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIN you will most likely run across events being held nearby that you can be a part of. Whether it’s a trade specific event or something more broad like Creative Mornings or TED talks these events are gathering places for people going through the same things that you are.
5. Hire a coach/mentor
A common trait found in successful people is that they are always being coached or mentored. They realize that they can alway improve and grow in their skill sets. You can try to piece together or DIY your learning experience but the process can be streamlined with a coach or mentor. Good coaches and mentors are like trainers, they find out what you want to work on and they help you walk through how to make it a reality.
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