Four and a half years ago, I was pregnant with my second son. Through social media, I found a group of women who were all also expecting in December 2012. I think that this is the moment in time that I realized just how powerful social media could be. Throughout my pregnancy and the first years of my son’s life, I never felt alone. I was always surrounded by moms who had babies the same age as mine and who were experiencing many of the same things as I was. We found support in one another, even during the wee hours of the night! Overnight nursing sessions became a time to connect, ask questions, help others and feel the presence of the moms who were in the same boat as I was. During this time, a deep connection developed with one mom in particular with whom I shared many interests and we instantly became the best of friends.
Funny thing is that I made this discovery well over four years ago, but never thought to transfer this networking into my professional life until about a year ago – when I finally actively joined the Twitter world. What I’ve now come to realize, more than ever, is that not being networked in education is a choice… and a very poor one at that.
There are no more excuses to not having a network of people who can support you, push your thinking, and inspire you. Being connected and networked has so many benefits so, what are you waiting for? You never have to feel alone again. You can always find people with similar interests. You can always find a place where you truly feel like you belong. And if we can have these feelings, so can our students! Open the world of possibilities, make those connections, and never feel alone again.
Side note – 4 years in the making… this week, I got to meet my virtual best friend.