How To Find Your Tribe
Let’s get real for a second. Being a creative person can sometimes be a bit isolating. Most creative arts are done solo so it can be hard to find others who share your interests. Then add in trying to create a business from your hobby and it can start to feel like you will always be doing things on your own. But here’s the thing, you don’t have to go it alone. There is an amazing community of makers and creatives out there just waiting for you to join them! You just need to find your tribe!
Turing your passion into a business is no small feat and it can be super overwhelming when you first start out. Finding others who are doing the same things as you can be so rewarding. They will know exactly what you are going through and can help you figure things out along the way. Having a few people to share your triumphs and frustrations with is the best thing ever. It took me a few years to find my tribe and now that I have it has made my life so much richer and easier.
Keep in mind that finding your tribe is a bit like dating. You have to be willing to put yourself out there and be a bit vulnerable. You also sometimes have to make the first move and deal with rejection. Don’t let the fear of reaching out stop you. Most creative people I have met are super friendly and they probably are just as anxious to make some real connections as you are.
It didn’t happen over night and yes, it was a bit scary to reach out to others, but once I got over that fear and started making connections it made me feel less alone and gave me the confidence I needed to keep growing my business. I want all of you to find your tribes too. Today I’m going to share with you a few ways that you can find other makers and start growing your tribe.
If you are not on social media yet, get on it right now! There are so many amazing makers sharing their work, struggles and accomplishments on Instagram and Facebook that you are sure to find a few new friends there. In fact that is where I met majority of my tribe and my maker BFF. Social media is all about engaging with others. Like and comment on other people’s posts, respond to their stories or reach out a start a conversation through direct messaging. It may start small with a few comments on someone post, but little by little it can grow into a friendship and be so much more.
On Facebook you can also join some maker groups. There are groups for people running small business like Maker Strong. Or groups for people who love to share crochet or kitting projects. Find your favorite maker on Facebook and see if they have their own group you can join. These groups are great for interacting and connecting with other creative people and the more you engage in a group the more you’ll get out of it.
If you happen to find some makers online that live close by, why not invite them to meet up for coffee? That’s how I met my maker BFF Kristina. We met on Instagram and when we realized we lived close to each other I reached out and asked if she wanted to hang out. It was an instant friendship and now we talk almost every day and help each other out with all our maker and business struggles. When you can turn your social media friendships into real life friendships amazing things can happen.
Being able to meet up with other creatives face to face is the best! There are tons of groups out in your community just waiting for you to join. If you are a crocheter or knitter you can find a local sip and stitch group by searching online or using the website MeetUp. Meet Up sometimes has a fee to join a group, but it can totally be worth the investment if you are able to make some real life connections with other makers.
You can also check out your local Etsy Team. Just search for teams near you on Etsy and see if they hold any get togethers. This can be a great way to find other small business owners in your area and gain knowledge from others doing the same work as you.
Finding a group to meet up with takes a bit of effort, but don’t let the fear of it hold you back from joining. The friendships you make will be worth the fear.
Attend a Craft Show
If you sign up to be a vendor at a craft show chances are there will be plenty of other makers there selling their goods too. This is a great way to meet other people. Strike up a conversation with the person selling next to you and if you hit off get their contact info so you can keep the conversation going. I’ve met a lot of maker friends by doing craft shows, especially at farmer’s markets where the same vendors were attending multiple weekends in a row. We were able to give each other advice and share our experiences. The key is not being afraid to make the first move. Say hi and see what happens.
Attend a Conference
Conferences are an excellent place to meet other creatives. Imagine having a whole room full of new friends who all have something in common. There are so many amazing conferences throughout the year that you can attend. Our Maker Life, Crochet Guild of America and Craftcation are just a few. It is a bit of an investment to attend, but the benefits of being able to connect with other makers is priceless. You will gain friendships and knowledge at a conference and have a lasting experience so I think it’s totally worth it.
Finding your tribe is so important. If you are a maker and are trying to start a small business you don’t have to do it alone. There are so many amazing people in this community just waiting to help you. Don’t be afraid to reach out, even if someone has a larger following than you. Remember that we all started at square one and we were probably just as confused and overwhelmed as you are right now. Take that first step and start making connections today.
I’m always here if you have any questions or just want to chat. Leave a comment below or send me an e-mail. I’d love to meet you!