No man is an island. Two heads are better than one. The whole is greater than the sum of its parts. There are so many common sayings, idioms and nuggets of wisdom out there that explain why you really shouldn’t go it alone if you want to maximize your chances at success. And yes, this applies to when you want to make money online too, even if you want to strike it out on your own.
The Power of Association
Another common piece of advice that you’ll hear is that you should surround yourself with like-minded individuals with similar goals as you. You might remember when John wrote about the power of association and how aligning yourself with successful people in your niche improves your chance at achieving success in the same niche. You can learn a lot from their experiences and you can tap into their expertise for further guidance. And they can learn from you too.
But there is a giant inherent problem to this notion of surrounding yourself with like-minded people. You run the risk of entering the echo chamber, surrounded by clones who all agree with one another.
No matter what opinion you hold, no matter how outrageous or far-fetched it may be, a community exists on the Internet that shares the viewpoint. And if this perspective happens to be incorrect in whatever way, all you’re going to do is perpetuate this error and hold yourself back. It pays to step outside your comfort zone and engage with people who are different from you.
The Fresh Maker
When you enter the echo chamber, it can be much more difficult to generate fresh and new ideas, because everyone in that chamber is thinking exactly the same thing. You’re all clones and sheep. If you always agree with one another, you can’t unearth the better ideas that may lie just beneath the surface. Or the ideas that may be completely outside of what you’re thinking.
It is said that you are the average of the five people with whom you most associate. I think that’s true. To this end, you do want to associate yourself with successful people who can pick you up, rather than associating yourself with losers who can drag you down. You don’t want to surround yourself with a negative attitude. At the same time, you don’t want to be surrounded by five of the same people either.
In the Real World
So, what can you do? Yes, you want to align yourself with successful people, but this doesn’t mean you should seek out five of the same successful people. Meetup groups like Dot Com Pho have proven invaluable, forging incredibly business partnerships and opportunities.
We all come from a different place in life and our ambitions aren’t exactly the same. That’s the point. We come to share ideas. We come to disagree and debate with one another. We come to propel all of us forward and upward. It’s through Dot Com Pho that I came to meet John Chow in the first place and it’s how I’ve come to work with him for all of these years. It’s through Dot Com Pho that I’ve been able to grow my freelance writing business into what it is today. The people who attend are like-minded in some regards and utterly different in others. That’s perfect.
If there isn’t already a similar kind of group where you live, then set up your own and invite other online entrepreneurs to join you. It’s not an echo chamber when you’re too busy disagreeing with one another while simultaneously supporting one another in your endeavors, exploits and ventures.