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  • Hannah Matarazzo

I'm not networking I'm going on a quest in yellow shoes!

Here it is, the push to get out of my comfort zone........I am aware to grow my work I must widen my circle. I need to get myself out there, attend networking events and talk with people I don't know, as an Introvert this is a challenge!

I have my first experience of standing at a networking event , delivering an elevator pitch, coming up this Friday. The challenge is to conform to the rules of this new networking world. I don't like to be packaged in a neat box and I'm not keen on rules. I find small talk, skimming the surface and the idea of presenting an image all uncomfortable.

I wrote the pitch, that was easy enough, I tried on outfits...not so easy, I have a wide array of clothes from charity shops. I love to collect items and then decide what to wear always as an extension of how I'm feeling. Clothes are a way to express creativity for me, I don't really think about how I present to others, I dress to express myself. Once I do start to consider what other people might think of how I look I get in a bit of a pickle and don't know what to wear!

So I had to call in the help of my chap and my Mum and I now have a suitable outfit at the ready, the gold skirt was not selected!

Today I decided to reflect and consider my feelings around networking and to reframe it in a way that felt more comfortable.

I have talked before about maintaining integrity, being true to myself, not faking it 'til I'm making it. I do however want to stretch myself, growing and making the most of my business.

I believe I have a purpose, I have skills and I feel fullifilled when using those skills. I love the work I do, I am passionate about the capacity people have within themselves to overcome trauma, knock down barriers, to rid themselves of burdens, to learn new skills and to achieve great things.

I love it when people feel accepted, when they feel they can talk openly with me and I love to see their self worth and confidence grow.

I can head into networking events with purpose, but I'm going to reframe what this networking business is all about in a way that sits better with who I am.

The plan then? Well I'm not networking, I'm actually going on a quest. My quest isn't to get as many business cards as possible or to talk to everyone in the room. I am not aiming to become the attractor of attention or to build up a huge list of contacts.

I'm on a quest to find a kindred spirits, just one at each event will be sufficient. I'm also on a quest to meet people who might balance me out, an extrovert to my introvert, someone who I might work with where our differences align. So I'm on a quest with a specific purpose, a kindred spirit connection quest.....................and so it begins!

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