I’m self-employed, and I work from home. Sometimes the only other beings I see for days are my cats.
When I lost my job in July of 2007 and decided to go into business for myself, the thing I realized missed the most about working in the office was talking to my co-workers. Going for coffee, lunch, or just talking about something we’d seen on TV the night before.
I love being self-employed. But it can be very quiet and lonely, especially for someone who consistently scores as an extrovert on the Meyers-Briggs.
I love online social networking because it ends up being like taking a break and chatting with my co-workers. But there’s nothing that can really replace hanging out with people I.R.L. (in real life), and I sometimes forget that.
I have a small business support group that I meet with once every two weeks, and I am always amazed at how much energy I take away from that meeting. Online social networking is great, but we also need to be around real people.
A lot of online social networking has been leading to real-life meetups: a group of people who have met online via Twitter will get together at a bar or a coffee shop to meet and talk and, yes, Twitter.
If you’re feeling stuck at home without human contact, go to meetup.com, do a search for something that interests you, and see if you can find a group of people meeting I.R.L. that you can connect with.
I know, it sounds crazy, but you just might like it. 😉