Are you up for a challenge?
I used to be deathly afraid of networking!
Meeting new people was scary. What would I say? What would I do? Would people want to even talk to me?
As you can tell my confidence was pretty low which kept me from ever trying to reach out to others and connecting with them.
Impostor syndrome, fear, doubt, you know the usual suspects had a pretty tight grip on me. They had me eating out of their hands and controlled my every thought and action.
But then COVID happened.
Video chats became the norm instead of the exception. The shift to meeting online was fast. It pushed me out of my comfort zone and it forced me to connect with people more often.
Slowly I kept gaining the courage and ability to reach out to people. People didn't have a choice. Meeting through video was the only way to work with your team and clients.
At that time I also started meditating regularly to deal with the new reality of being isolated from everyone, which actually helped me understand that the scary thoughts I had were just thoughts and not my reality. I didn't need to be a prisoner to impostor syndrome and I definitely didn't need to fear meeting people.
My attitude towards networking changed.
I began enjoying meeting people and talking with them to connect at a human level. I finally understood why networking was considered to be so important.
This was a message that Candice Yee shared on the latest episode of the Low Fidelity podcast. Her positive approach to networking helped me realize that networking opens up the world for us. Connecting with new people helps us broaden our minds and knowledge. It makes us empathetic and helps us grow by seeing the world from other people's perspectives. Networking also brings opportunities for us. It opens doors for us and for others and makes the world just a little bit more human.
A Networking Challenge For You
In our conversation, Candice shared a challenge with everyone to set a goal of connecting with one new person each month. I think that is a great way to ease into meeting new people and hopefully new friends along the way. You can even begin with meeting Candice herself or even myself, I would love to chat with you and learn more about you.
Remember, networking doesn't have to be scary, a shift in perspective is all that is needed to gain the benefits from it.
Are you up to the challenge?
Listen to the Low Fidelity podcast episode with Candice Yee where she shares her approach to networking and how it helped her career, her story is quite inspiring.
Let me know how it goes. I have started this challenge and would love to learn what your experience has been like.
Till next time, stay strong!