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Why networking is important and how to do it right

Networking isn’t too difficult despite what some of us may think. It’s all about getting out of your comfort zone and venturing from one social circle to the next. Eventually, you will come across people who share the same interests as you.

It’s pretty straightforward. The more you connect with people the more your network grows. And so do the perks that come along with it. When you see an opportunity to foster friendships with people from the same career path, just take a deep breath and go for it.

If you’re still not clear on what do, here’s a quick starter’s guide to get things moving.

1. Establish a rapport

Networking is essentially all about building genuine relationships with people within the industry. It makes life easier when you’re able to “click” with someone instantly without too much effort. And that’s always a great confidence booster.

You can break the ice with anything that comes to mind; it doesn’t necessarily have to be a work-related topic. Just be yourself. Make each other feel at ease by exchanging jokes, talking about hobbies or other common interests. Try to eliminate as much awkwardness as possible.

The whole point of networking goes beyond making good impressions. It’s about forming lasting friendships so you don’t end up becoming just another name on a business card.

You want the person to remember you wholeheartedly so grab every chance when it comes to mingling; whether that means a lunch invitation, a meeting over drinks or something unexpected. Like, a random encounter in an elevator.

2. Keep in touch

Keeping in touch with your contacts is a vital element of networking. Once the foundation is laid you want to retain and strengthen all those new relationships you just built. And that’s best done by maintaining active communication.

Reach out to your new friends every so often with the occasional phone call, text or e-mail. Interact with them on social media. Post on their wall, comment on their status updates or drop a quick “Hi!” in their inbox every once in a while.

Once all the formalities are out of the way you can plan more personal meets. Like a coffee date or brunch that can help create a closer bond. This will ultimately grant you more insight into the world you work in.

If you fail to keep in touch then there’s no point reading the next chapter. Your story ends right there.

3. Helping hands

Networking is basically a two-way avenue. The more you help out the more favors you’ll get back in return.

It’s like playing a co-op video game. You can’t complete certain missions without a partner providing occasional assistance to help you along the way. By the same token you want to help out when your partner is in need.

In a professional context always offer before you ask and take a genuine interest in other people’s projects.

Reach out from time to time and ask your friend if he/she needs a few helping hands; this will greatly enhance your reputation and credibility as people will start to observe a more attractive personality in you.

If you don’t have intimate knowledge in your friend’s project, provide a contact that can out help out instead. Having a contact in your pocket that can help a friend is synonymous with helping them yourself.

Words can have a powerful influence on people. Remember to thank or show gratitude in any shape or form when your friend agrees to help you.

4. Bring a wingman

Attending an event alone can be daunting when you’re in a crowded room full of new faces.

Having a buddy by your side when you’re networking will boost your confidence and help take away some of the awkwardness. Bringing a friend from a different company is even better. It’ll break the ice more quickly and will stir up more interesting topics to discuss.

Finally, a friend can help take some of the load off if you notice the conversation is becoming one-sided. Talking about yourself all night can get a little redundant. That’s when your friend enters and spins the conversation and stops you from bragging about your own agenda.

5. Mix and match

Make an effort to attend a variety of events as much as possible.

Going to summits and seminars allows you to connect with influential people on a more personal level. The more you explore the greater access you’ll get to people from other relevant fields in the industry. That’s a valuable asset to have in your arsenal.

Speaking out at different summits and seminars gives a platform to offer your thoughts and ideas to others even if it’s an event you wouldn’t normally consider attending.

Doing all this strengthens your reputation and eventually, you’ll be able to influence others to join your cause.

RECAP

All in all networking is a make-or-break game, but once you’ve mastered the ropes it’s a lot less intimidating.

There is no substitute for relationship building. Think of it as a long-term investment, the more hands you shake the more benefits you’ll receive in return.

Be confident and come dressed with a smile. And as long as you have this basic toolkit the rest will come naturally.

The ultimate breakup playlist for the broken hearted

Breakups are hard.

Maybe you were together for months, or maybe it was an undeniable flame that went out after 3 weeks. No matter what the relationship dynamics were, letting go of a person and all the memories associated with them can be a daunting work. And if you are not careful, you can fall off the wagon and it could lead to an on-again, off again relationship. You do not want that in your life, because those are a recipe for disaster.

There are a lot of ways you can get through a breakup. Getting into a rebound relationship is one of them. But if you truly want to heal, then you will have to take some time for yourself, and rip off the band-aid. And it hurts. No matter how much we sugarcoat it, it hurts. And all you can think of is how you can numb the pain. But what you have to understand is, you need to let it hurt, and in time, it will subside.

But what can you do in the meantime? Alcohol and drugs can seem like a solution, but they are not. Turn to music instead. Listen to the playlist we have compiled for you. There are 20 songs here, and we believe this will help you get through those long, lonely nights.

20. Where’s my love- SMYL

Listen to this song in the first few weeks. You will relate to it, maybe you will cry. Or maybe you will burn a few more cigarettes than necessary. But at the same time, it will be soothing to know that you are not the only one to be feeling what you are feeling.

19. Oh well, okay- Elliot Smith

Getting broken up with comes with a lot of confusion. This song will help you articulate that feeling.

18. The trapeze swinger- Iron and Wine

You’re miserable. You go over and over again on the good times, and the bad times, and you just hope that they don’t forget you when they find someone else. You will definitely relate to this song.

17. Hard Feelings- Lorde

You know there is nothing called an “amicable breakup”. Every time, someone gets hit harder than the other one. If you are that one, this one is for you.

16. Six degrees of separation- The Script

You are desperately trying come to terms with the breakup. Of course, this isn’t how you pictured to the relationship to end. You are trying to find closure, and trust me, my friend, you will.

15. Feel so low- Porcupine Tree

If you need a little reminder of why the end is a good thing, this is the song for you.

14. Already gone- Sleeping at last

If you’re starting to accept the end, then listen to this one.

13. Silhouettes of you- Isaac Gracie

At some point, you will start getting tired of feeling down all the time just because someone else didn’t want to put in the same effort in a relationship like you did. This song is precisely for that point. Listen to it, and you will know.

12. You’re somebody else- flora cash

With this song, remind yourself that they weren’t the same person that you fell in love with. Gather up the courage to admit that you are only clinging onto a memory, and sometimes it is better to let go than to hold on.

11. Ayahuasca- Vancouver Sleep Clinic

In the process of getting over someone, you will feel fear, confusion, exhaustion and a lot of other mixed emotions. You will feel lost and overwhelmed. Let VSC help you through that time. You will figure out how to fix this. Just hold on.

10. Snap out of it- Arctic Monkeys

There are times you will feel like reaching out to them. DO NOT DO THAT. Put this one on full volume, and dance along until you don’t want to call them anymore.

09. I’ll still have me- CYN

This is where you stop becoming bitter and start believing that you will be okay. You will always have you, so probably you should start loving yourself a little more. That is the message this song holds.

08. Love will set you free- Kodaline

At this point, we hope you have found some solace in the fact that some things simply have to end and you can’t do anything about it. You are ready to move on, you are ready to face the world again. And this song is perfect to celebrate that occasion.

07. I will survive- Gloria Gaynor

Yes, you will, my friend.

06. Poison and Wine- The Civil wars

Listen to this wistful track when nostalgia hits. But remember, never go back to what broke you.

05. Raindrops keep falling on my head- B. J. Thomas

At this point, you are actually positive that things are going to be alright. Treat yourself to this song whenever those “raindrops” start falling on your head. The sun is not far behind.

04. Here comes the sun- The Beatles

Life is starting to get better, isn’t it?

03. Never going back again- Fleetwood Mac

Every time you feel the urge to go back to your ex because they are familiar, listen to this song. Promise yourself that you will treat yourself better, and you will let someone better into your life. Promise yourself that you won’t keep running in circles.

02. You’ll be okay- A Great Big World

All along, you’ve told yourself that you’ll be okay. Now let this great band tell you the same thing with different wording. Try to keep yourself open. Don’t be just another person too scarred and too scared to love again.

1. In between love- Tom Waits

You’re hopeful about love again. You accept that unexpected things happen if you let yourself stay open. Great song to listen to if you’re crushing on somebody, and the feeling is mutual.

So there you go, my friend. We believe in you. Stay strong.

Cheers.