“Why don’t you go and join someone to make a team?”
Just one short sentence and suggestion that turns me cold all over. Joe and I looked at each other, both thinking exactly the same thing: “But we’re quite happy here, thank you!”
Instead, we nodded and caught the eye of another young-ish couple on the next table. We communicated in that most British of ways. I raised my eyebrows and smiled slightly; she tilted her head to the side; he raised his eyebrows and nodded.
That’s it; settled.
We stood up, walked over, sat down, and introduced ourselves. And there we were: in our first team at our first local pub quiz. All the way over the road…
Joe and I love pub quizzes. We’ve both got quite a creditable store of useless and esoteric information and as long as there isn’t a round on Coronation Street or something (and we did go to a quiz once that had a whole round on that most British of soap operas) we do okay.
The couple we were with assured us that they were terrible at this pub quiz and usually came last, or at least in the bottom of the table.
And we were off. The first round was the picture round, which was pretty cool actually – identify pubs from the local area just from their photograph and a brief cryptic description. Well, it would have been cool for us if we’d been living here for more than a couple of weeks, but we’ve decided to treat it as our “To Do” list.
We had a great time. Despite forcing ourselves to talk to strangers, we did. And the strangers are longer strangers, they’re fellow villagers and they’re lovely… as are most people, I’ve found, when you take the trouble to get to know them. A few more people came and introduced themselves – everyone’s very interested in The Dingle, because the old chap who used to live here was here for about 50 years and used to run the local scout group.
So there’s a group of lads of a certain age who all know our back garden and woodland very well indeed. Which is kinda cool.
As you know, I’m a people person only insofar as I’m very picky about whom I spend time with. I don’t think I’m the easiest person in the world to get to know; but I do enjoy meeting new people because everyone has an interesting story to tell, if only you can dig it out of them.
And because I work on my own most of the time, it’s probably a good thing if I get to know a few of our neighbours. In a small community like this, you need to get on with people and you need their support.
Much like business, really. It can be quite a lonely journey, running a business on your own. I remember when I first started out, I felt terribly isolated because I had not a clue what I was doing.
It was only after I joined two mentoring groups that things changed for me and I started seeing real growth.
If you’re not part of a mentoring group, you should consider joining one. If you find the right one, you’ll be amazed at what you can achieve – if you put the work in. If you’re not quite ready for that though, you should read my book, Business For Superheroes. It’s a true account of my own struggles and will show you what not to do, as well as what to do, to grow your business. You can buy a copy here.
Cos that’s the thing, you see: I’ve found most people want the success, but they don’t seem to want to do the work. Or rather, it’s not an aversion to hard work… it’s an unwillingness to do stuff that might seem off-the-wall and make them feel uncomfortable. Here’s the thing, though: if you do the opposite to what everyone else in your industry is doing, you’re probably on the right track.
Plus, you’ll be amazed at how quickly uncomfortable begins to feel comfortable…
Go here, take a look, and buy a copy if it sounds like your kinda thing.
Vicky Fraser is a copywriter, author, and entrepreneur. She really did run away with the circus… but when she’s not swinging from a trapeze, she’s showing other copywriters and small business owners how to work with better clients, make more money, and stop missing bathtimes, first words, and dinners with angry partners. In fact, she wrote the book on it. Get your copy here.