Talk to people.

Looking for new opportunities? Struggling to figure out your next move?

Talk to people.

Looking for customers? New clients? A job?

Talk to people.

Looking for advice? Hitting a wall? Feeling stuck?

Skip the courses and books and TALK TO PEOPLE!

Yes, I know this is not what you want to hear.

Browsing the bestseller lists on Amazon is a definitely more comfortable than talking to people.

I too would love to pay 99 cents for an ebook and have all my questions answered.

But it doesn’t work like that.

99.99% of people don’t write books or record YouTube videos. And even if they did, the chances that they talk about things directly relevant to you are slim.

Content by its very nature must generalize. It’s a one-to-many medium. It’s never specific enough to be that useful unless you get extremely lucky.

You can get big picture ideas like “document everything and build systems”. But you won’t get the nitty gritty details of how people in your exact situation have successfully done this. If you’re lucky you’ll get one or two case studies.

In a world where everyone is hiding behind chat interfaces and is constantly distracted by infinite amounts of content, the willingness to talk to people is almost a cheat code at this point.

It’s one of the most common patterns I see among successful people.

When they are between projects and not sure what to do next, they schedule meetings with whoever is willing to talk to them.

They are transparent that there is not really an agenda, they’re just figuring out what to do next. And a ton of people are willing to help in a situation like that.

The next big idea will then most likely not come a single conversation. In fact, a lot of these conversations feel like a waste of time. But over the course of many conversations, a pattern will emerge.

Now this is definitely a messy process. It’s not as clean as reading a book or taking a course where someone walks you through a 5-step process.

But unlike these, talking to people actually works.

In one-on-one conversations, you can get specific. You can ask questions. You can get direct feedback. You can get advice. You will be challenged. You can get introductions. And people are willing to share a lot more than on Twitter or in a blog post.

So, whether you’re feeling lost or you’ve hit a roadblock on your journey to success, remember this: you’re usually just a dozen or so conversations away from a breakthrough.

Written on June 11, 2023

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