Confession: I had two fears surrounding this move to Phoenix –
1. Learning to navigate all new roads because, well, let’s be honest, if you’ve ever driven with me, you KNOW I have zero sense of direction whatsoever.
2. How was I going to meet new people?! I work entirely from home and know virtually no one out here.
If you’re not familiar with the site, it’s basically a community building and social networking platform. You type in your interests, it shows you events in your area that appeal to those interests, and you choose whether you want to attend or not.
The first group to pop up on my account was called Wanderful Women Who Travel – Phoenix, which is a local chapter of a much larger organization called “Wanderful”. The description read: “We are jetsetters, expats, and young (and young at heart), professional, globally minded women. We believe in getting involved in the world around us, whether through travel, volunteering, or global awareness — and we believe in the power of an internationally connected community to do it! Come join us for lectures, workshops, dinners out, and other things for women globetrotters”.
If there was a group made for me, this was it. It may as well have had my name on it!
The next event on their schedule was the evening of January 26th, where together, we would attend the Lights of the World Lantern Festival in Chandler, Arizona about 35 miles away from where I live.
I’ll be honest; I was a little bit apprehensive at first. I’d never done anything like this before and wasn’t sure what to expect. It was out of my comfort zone for sure, but my anxieties were quickly put to ease as I walked up to a group of friendly, smiling faces.
Over the course of 3 hours, I met and spoke with women from all walks of life. There were travel nurses, communications professionals, teachers, and consultants. We came from pretty much every geographic area of the country, too, which was fascinating; Colorado, California, Minnesota, Massachusetts, Louisiana, Texas, Georgia, and of course, this Florida girl. We talked about our backgrounds, our current situations, our families, our adventures, and our goals, then watched a pretty incredible acrobatics show (for those that saw my Snapchat story last night, how crazy was that?!)
The group plans to hold 2 events a month moving forward, which I’m pretty excited to take part in. Professional headshots & mimosas, social media marketing trainings, that sort of thing. How cute, right?!
My final thoughts: I want to seek out some more Meetups in my area, as I really think that they’re a cool and unique way to connect with others who share interests and want to meet new people in the community just as I do. Whether I end up creating lasting friendships, new potential business contacts, or just a couple of acquaintances from this, all the while, it was a nice way to spend an evening, & I look forward to all that’s to come. Two thumbs up from me!
Have YOU ever attended a Meetup? What was your experience like?