As a coach I am observing how much time goes into online networking. It is key to take time out to nurture yourself and your friendships with face to face interactions.
Recently, Funky to Fabulous friends spent time at Artwalk in Downtown Los Angeles. It was so energizing that we will be doing this every month. Here are some tips for serial socializing from fellow HP blogger Kari Henley.
"Not sure how to get started with some serial socializing?
Try to find a way to socially engage in three categories: daily, weekly and monthly. Each takes a slightly different focus and each offer its own rewards.
Daily: set a goal to make a heartfelt connection to at least one person each day that you do not normally run into. 'Reach Out and Touch Someone' - via email, phone call or in person. Think of this as a chance to check in, ask how they are, and offer help if it is needed. When you extend a hand, the return is always there. Maybe someone you know just had a baby, or lost a relative, or is feeling blue.
Weekly: find a small group of people you enjoy and make a weekly commitment to get together. For the social types, try coffee once a week. For athletic types, take a walk, jog or yoga class together. For the spiritual types, try a weekly meditation group to keep everyone relaxed, centered and connected. Make it short- one to two hours, so it is easy to keep the commitment.
Monthly: join or develop a group that may be a bit larger, that shares a common interest. Maybe it is a book club with a twist, a motorcycle riding group, a social action group, a 'going green' group, poetry slam, or a poker night. Monthly gatherings are often the easiest to schedule, and to maintain long term. Think of each of these social commitments as individual roots you are planting in the ground, and as something sacred to cherish.
Our lives are marked by the connections we have, not the accomplishments of our careers. "Battling loneliness requires sacrificing time that could be spent elsewhere, but the payoffs are worth it."