Why Offline Is the New Online (and What This Means for Entrepreneurs)

It's not about what you know, it's about who you know and who they know.
Why Offline Is the New Online (and What This Means for Entrepreneurs)
Image credit: Courtesy of Gerard Adams

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Entrepreneur, angel investor, self-made millionaire at 24
6 min read
Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

All it takes is one new human connection to change the trajectory of your entire life.

This is something I experienced after doing tons of traveling this summer. I was attending different masterminds and experiences in places like Tulum, Italy, Spain, Paris, Amsterdam and Greece.

One of the biggest realizations I had from these experiences was that the new online is offline. I’ve been pulling away from online platforms, videos and courses. Connecting online with people is great, but I believe that there isn’t anything like connecting with someone’s energy in person.

Truth is, your network is your social currency. That’s why it’s so important for you to get out into the world to meet new people, because at any moment, your life can change. All it takes is one new valuable relationship.

The key to having an extraordinary life is by creating valuable relationships because the old adage is true … we do become an average of the five people we spend the most time with. It’s your responsibility to ensure your circle of influence is positive, supportive and empowering.

Why the new online is offline

The more time we spend with technology, the less time we spend building real human connections. To build deep social connections with other people, it will require you to get out of your shell and into the real world.

People want to feel your energy in-person. They want to know the real you.

Something I learned recently was that building deep social relationships with other people leads to a 50 percent greater chance of living longer.

In The Gifts of Imperfection, social connection expert from the University of Houston Brene Brown said, “We are biologically, cognitively, physically, and spiritually wired to love, to be loved, and to belong. When those needs are not met, we don’t function as we were meant to. We break. We fall apart. We numb. We ache. We hurt others. We get sick.”

This means if our relationships are weak, then we become weak. I genuinely believe that one person can be the single factor to transforming your life. This has certainly been the case for me in my success, especially as an entrepreneur. 

I decided to attend events and put myself in the same rooms with the people I wanted to learn from. I realized that real value and power comes from investing in building an offline relationship.

By investing my time, energy and money into masterminds; I’ve shown my dedication and commitment to building that offline relationship. Doing this allows you the opportunity to meet other like-minded individuals who are on the same mission as you. Does your circle of influence have these type of people?

This reminds me of an old proverb: “If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.” 

Building social currency  

Getting out into the real world greatly increases your opportunity of finding people to build valuable relationships with. I know meeting new people can be a scary and fearful experience but that’s the feeling of you stepping out of your comfort zone. Becoming apart of a community is the fastest and most effective way to build social currency.

As I mentioned before, social currency is everything. Social currency comes from how valuable your network is. There are opportunities that can only be given to you by certain people. The internet has made it fair game for anybody who wants to become successful… but who you know still matters the most.

I truly believe that the more successful people you know, the more successful you’ll be. That has been the case for me in my past 17 years of being an entrepreneur. Conversely, if your circle of influence isn’t supportive, empowering and purpose-driven, it’ll be harder for you to reach your true potential.

Social currency isn’t just the value that comes from your relationships but also the value you bring to the relationships. This can mean everything if you’re striving to be an entrepreneur. To build valuable relationships, you must become valuable. The more valuable you are, the more opportunities you attract.

Ask yourself: What value can I offer to the world? What can I do that others find challenging? What is a need they have that I can fulfill? These are questions you must answer to yourself to gain a deeper understanding of what type of value you can offer to your circle of influence, team, family and community.

One connection is all it takes

Who you know is the secret sauce to having more opportunities to succeed in life and business. This can be a mentor, client, team member or business partner. My first mentor inspired me to drop out of college and start my first business. He changed my life forever.

A mentor can give you advice that is only learned from experience and walking the path. A new client can potentially refer you to someone who wants to work with you and pay you more. A hungry intern that has a valuable skillset and wants learn from you or a business partner who crushes it in marketing can save you thousands of dollars over hiring an expert.

All it takes is one relationship. So, leverage social media as a tool to reach out to people you want to build relationships with and then find time to meet them in person. Use the internet to find meetups in your area with other entrepreneurs, creatives and dreamers, attend networking events. Do something that gets you around empowering perspectives, ideas and energy. Get yourself immersed in an enviroment where people are driven, ambitious and uplifting. These type of enviroments can spark inspiration, creativity, innovation and leadership. Who do you want in your circle of influence?

The next step

Start thinking about the value of your relationships that you’re building and the value you’re bringing to them. Remember, the people we associate with become apart of who we are.

Use tech as a tool to find people you want to connect with in-person and empowering communities you can become a part of. I love technology, but the more time we spend online, the less time we spend offline doing things that can positively impact our life.

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