3 low-stress ways to connect with creatives offline

creatives connecting offline

If you know me in person or have followed my blog for a while, you know that I deal with anxiety. As a blogger, I'm always invited to mixers and networking events to get to know the other movers and shakers in my area, but my anxiety has kept me from having a productive or even enjoyable experience in such large groups of people. It can be hard to break out of your own circle of existing friends and break into a new group of talented, successful, awesome people without feeling inferior or just totally overwhelmed. 

Since I'm sure I'm not the only nervous Nellie out here in the blogging world (I mean, we do all hide behind our screens!), I wanted to share a few ideas for connecting offline with creatives in your community that don't require small talk or navigating big crowds.

01. Co-working | I mentioned in yesterday's post that I've recently started co-working with a group of local gals. Every Tuesday evening we get together, bring a few things to work on, bounce ideas off each other and get inspired for what's ahead. It was so nice to trade Instagram tips, get a second opinion on which outfit photos would do best on Pinterest, and brainstorm future post ideas. Blogging, or doing anything creative, 100% alone can be detrimental with no one to talk shop with or learn and grow from. Chelsea is a great connector of people and she just put a call out on Instagram inviting people to join us. This was such a cool way to involve new creatives we didn't already know and is definitely something anyone could recreate in their own community.

02. Workshops | I love attending creative workshops because there is something to do besides stand around and talk. When you're learning a craft or trying out a new skill, everyone is on a more level playing field and there are built-in conversation starters. One thing I've been really wanting to start is emailing bloggers and creatives in Austin who I think really excel at something we could all learn from and asking them to lead workshops. This helps me make a connection while also lifting someone up in my community and introducing their expertise to others. How cool would it be to pay it forward and create a whole line of people hosting workshops and inviting brilliant creatives to share their knowledge? Plus, who doesn't want to attend a workshop on styling Instagram shots, creating an editorial calendar, or writing more engaging content? It's a win for everyone!

03. One-on-one | The number one way I have gotten to know my local bloggers and makers is through one-on-one dates. Is there someone who inspires you that you've always wanted to talk to? Send her an email. Is there someone you follow who you think you'd just be the best of friends with if only you met offline? Leave an Instagram comment proposing brunch (who says no to brunch?). Or, did you meet someone at a workshop or co-working event that you'd like to get to know better? Set a date to meet for drinks one night to really have a chance to talk.

We have all of these social media platforms constantly at our fingertips, so let's use them to get offline and connect in person! Don't wait for the next networking event to meet someone new, especially if mixers are more stressful than satisfying.

Still working on finding consistency in your creativity? Check out my 5 tips for maintaining a creative life!

15 comments

  1. Great list! I also suffer from anxiety, so putting myself out there can be a little scary. I think co-working and workshops would be great ways to meet people! Having a common interest is always a good start. Also, if I didn't live so faraway, I'd totally want to go to brunch with you!

    ReplyDelete
  2. I love this! I'm currently working on trying to get myself out of the house more, both to socialize more and to give myself opportunities to organically meet men (online dating has been really meh. Also, I feel like an older person saying "organically meet men." Is this who I am now?!), so this list came at the perfect time! Budget constraints have been a big factor on not getting out more, but I need to find ways to get around that and get out there. Maybe your workshop idea would make a good meetup.com group?

    ReplyDelete
  3. If you're not busy tonight, you should join us at Medici on South Lamar! We'll be there every Tuesday from about 6 to about 9! It's just a bunch of bloggers and creative gals bringing stuff to work on and hanging out.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I wish you lived closer so we could brunch! If you're ever down to visit Austin, hit me up girl!

    ReplyDelete
  5. I'm sure it's obvious that I have major social anxiety issues since I still haven't been to a single blogger event lol but I really want to! I need to stop being such an introvert :/

    ReplyDelete
  6. This post really resonated with me. I totally understand the feeling of anxiety from getting together with a large group of people. Everyone is doing so many inspiring things, it's hard to not feel intimidated. I often have to force myself to attend things, and I'm always happy that I do, but I wish I didn't have to have a mini panic attack in my car on the way to a networking event.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Yes! Although I don't suffer from social anxiety, I'll sometimes shy away from the super large events because of how tired it makes me (does this happen to anyone else?) I love interacting with and seeing so many creatives in one place (like TxSC!) but as someone who is a "true" introvert (I get my energy from my alone time, though I love being social with lots of people) I sometimes just find large events exhausting. Smaller venues like what you and Chelsea are doing are perfect. I'll see y'all at Cafe Medici some time soon!

    ReplyDelete
  8. lol I always just assumed you were busy! come co-work sometime -- it'll be the most chill. sending posi vibes your way!

    ReplyDelete
  9. Fantastic post, Nicole! At times, it feels like blogging is a solitary thing because all you really need is a computer and ideas, so it's nice getting together with other bloggers and creative people to talk things out and see if the idea in your head makes sense to others. I love when I meet my NY and NJ blogger friends in NYC because we all get to talk about people who understand. I like the idea of coworking and workshops! I should recommend that to the bloggers I see every few months and seeing if they would want to do that since we usually just eat food and talk.
    ~Sara

    ReplyDelete
  10. Great post! I suffer with anxiety too and it's easy to get sucked into our own little worlds. I currently can't drive/don't have a car so making plans has become incredibly difficult so I'm trying to come up with creative ways to still stay in touch with people in the community. Its' definitely hard but those are some great ideas. The idea of co-working is my favorite! Such a great, 'non-stressful' way to get together. :D Hope you are well.

    xx

    Lauren Jade
    Lauren Jade Lately
    'Simplifying Life, Maximizing Happiness’

    ReplyDelete
  11. I love these ideas!! I so wish I knew more bloggers in my area that are on the same "level" as me.

    ReplyDelete
  12. I love the workshop idea! I think this would be especially cool to get in at the intersection of blogging and making, because so many Austin bloggers are also vendors. Little lessons on how they do what they do would be super cool, especially if we got to visit everyone's home at the same time. I'm up for a painting workshop! :)

    ReplyDelete
  13. Love these tips! I wish I could find some awesome blog ladies near me to get together with! :(

    ReplyDelete
  14. Niiiice! This is sooo hard for me because I too have anxiety and honestly I'm quite the little introvert. Some people get amped up off of other peoples energy where I get drained after hanging out with groups of people and have to be by myself to re-boost my energy. I think some people don't get it or take offense that I don't or can't hang out all the time but it really starts to wear on me. Two weeks ago I was bouncing around hanging out with a bunch of different peeps like every other day and it caught up to me and I physically got sick, like I thought I had the flu or something and I ended up sleeping a whole day away. Weird right?!
    xoxo
    Taylor
    http://www.nothingbutapigeon.com/

    ReplyDelete

© Writes Like a Girl | Austin Style Blog | Body Positive Fashion Blogger. Design by Fearne.