I have often lived in my own little bubble as most technology-geek-type people do. I hardly stepped out, stretched myself and joined the world outside. In the last little while I have had the opportunity to expand my world and I took it. I was asked to attend a networking function with a friend. I had probably met a half dozen professionals from various disciplines. Again this week an opportunity arose where by offering to help pay for a website renewal, I had the opportunity to hide in my bubble and pay with PayPal or go hand deliver the money and meet someone new; I chose to meet someone new.
You may ask why I am talking about living in my bubble and now getting out and meet people. It is because I am trying to make the contacts that I should have made long ago, but was to introverted to do so. There are a lot of opportunities that I had missed because I did not know people and they did not know me. Opportunities are often given to you by those you know. It is easier to be noticed for a career change if people know who you are beforehand. I was once told to get into a certain company; it is who you know, rather than how much you know that will get you into the door. I am not touting my accomplishments in this posting, but to share a life experience that may help.
In terms of the fore-mentioned opportunity where I helped pay for a website renewal, it was hard for people to grasp why I was doing it. My first reason is because I used the website and it helps me on a weekly basis; I immediately saw the value. The second reason is because I like and respect the company that put the call out for help. I had seen it as an opportunity for me to meet someone new, get face to face with a company that I would love to work for and to see what other opportunities may lay ahead if I do extend myself. I think it was still a bit unknown to a few people around for the exact reason, but it was really that simple. I may never know the outcome of this visit, but at very least it was practice meeting people and next time it will be that much easier for me to spot the opportunity and to engage it.
If you live in your bubble, life will pass you by. If you do not extend your boundaries, you may never know what you can do. Life is what you make it and I plan on making mine full of people. Life is about continuing to grow and learn. This week I learned how to be more accessible to people and not to miss the opportunities that may come my way. Once you spot the opportunity; learn engage it!