Networking issues

When I first had the idea of starting a blog, I had an idea of me hiding behind a desk on a computer. Away from the rest of the world behind a screen. But my idea was completely wrong!

Blogging might seem like a solitary hobby or profession but it takes more socializing and communication than you might realise.

Blogging is about connecting with other people, not just sharing your knowledge online and hoping that people will read it. If they don’t know you then why would they read your work?

If you remember, a while back I ordered a pack of business cards to promote my blog. A few months later and now I’ve used more of those cards as bookmarks instead of business cards.

I just didn’t take the next step; I need to get outside and start networking!

I was reading in a post by Jeff Goins that ‘It’s not only what you know, but also who you know’. This is so true. If we want to be successful bloggers, then we need to connect with other likeminded bloggers and writers.

You may have noticed by now, but I’m not the most social person in the world. Connecting with other people in person is not something that I naturally do (whence why I write). Networking is the new trial that my blog is facing but how can I overcome it?

Three reasons for lack of networking:

The first thing that you have to do when facing an issue is to address that there is an issue to be addressed. So what are our reasons for sucky networking?

Comfort zone

I’m going out on a limb here, but I’m guessing that most people with networking issues are most likely going to be shy and prefer their own company over other people. Don’t worry, I’m just like you.

I’m not saying that if you’re having networking issues then you might be socially challenged; I’m just saying that you’re not natural socializers. Ever considered that you might be too comfortable? Maybe you might need a change of scenery every once in a while.

Do something different. Get out of your comfort zone.

Wrong circles

Maybe you’re great at socializing; you can charm your way into any conversation, but maybe not with the right people. Like Jeff said in his blog ‘It’s not only what you know, but also who you know’.

This is one thing that I definitely need to start doing! You might be reaching a lot of people but is your work relevant to them?

You need to find a circle of relevant people who can get the most out of your work.

I’m not saying that you need to cut out any of your old circles but you do need to expand. You never know who your work might impact if you reach out

Lack of confidence

Lack of confidence is something that most of us would share and is at the root of our networking issues. We wonder to ourselves; why would anyone read my work? Is it really any good?

If you’ve written something, then that makes your better than 90% of ‘Writers’!

Being able to write something is, in itself, something to be confident about. Every writer doubts themselves. That’s what makes them good.

A doubtful writer is one that is cautious with his work and proofreads every line of his text. And that should be enough to give anyone confidence with their work.

 

Networking is never going to be an easy issue. But I know for me, blogging is becoming a natural part of my life; it’s a part of what I do, a part of who I am, it’s a big part of my identity. I often introduce myself as a blogger. Making your blog a natural part of your life will make networking so much easier!

All you have to do is accept that you’re a blogger and that’s who you are. Networking becomes so much easier after that!

Does anyone else have any tips to overcome networking issues?

-Chris Gutteridge

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