I turned 27 Monday, and though I know it’s not really old, for some reason it kind of freaks me out. I think it’s the realization that I’m so close to 30, again these things are not important and it’s all in my head, but still.
In honor of my irrationality, I’ve decided to post one goal a day for the next five days. These goals are things I want to accomplish by my 28th birthday. I hope that by putting these out into the public eye, I’ll be able to accomplish them. The first post in the series can be found here.
The goal I’m publishing today is to work on maintaining more relationships. For the first 26 years of my life, I have not done a good job keeping connections established with people outside of my close circle of friends. I have never had a problem making friends or having conversations with people. My problem is that once I find myself no longer in a situation where I had to interact with people, whether due to changing jobs, finishing a project, or a semester ending, I failed to maintain the relationship.
I've decide I have to remedy this, not only because I've lost the connection to a lot of great people, but because of the opportunities that may filter my way due to these relationships. Whether it's a new job, volunteer opportunity, or something else, knowing a large group of people can lead to great things both for me and hopefully to those around me.
I'm not quite sure how to go about this, it's not in my nature to just reach out to people just to reach out. Twitter, Facebook, and Linkedin are helpful, but technology isn't the solution to this problem. I need to get better at just sending out quick notes to people, providing feedback, and thanking those who help me.
To this end, I'm going to try and do the following: One, I am going to purchase personal business cards for myself so I can exchange cards with more people. Getting peoples name and contact information is an important step. Second, I am going to make a point of sending thank you cards for more things than just receiving a gift. Things such as sending a card to those who host events I go to, to people who introduce me to someone new, or for taking the time to provide feedback on something I'm working on. This isn't something I've done in the past so it will require a commitment. Third, I need to get better at just picking up the phone, sending email, in essence just interacting with others. Even just an email to an article I think someone may find interesting would be a positive step.
This goal may be the most difficult goal I am setting for myself, mainly because it's something I've never tried before. I would love suggestions on different ways you maintain your relationships.