It can be hard to find like minded people to share and co-create with. Building community can make life lots more fun.
Kate McCombs from http://www.SexGeekdom.com, Ashley Manta from http://www.AshleyManta.com and Cathy Vartuli from http://www.TheIntimacyDojo.com share tips and their experiences.
Cathy: So if you watched our last video, we’re talking about collaboration and how much fun it is to work with other people. If you feel kind of isolated and alone Building Community can make a huge difference and make life just amazing. So I am here with Kate from http://www.SexGeekdom.com.
Kate: Hi there.
Cathy: Ashley Manta from http://www.AshleyManta.com.
Cathy: Cathy Vartuli from the http://www.TheIntamacyDojo.com. Kate is actually building community down under.
Kate: Oh I love a down under pun.
Cathy: Would you like to share?
Kate: Sure, yeah. Actually I’ve just moved back to the U.S. from three and a half years in Australia. I moved there to get my masters in public health. I didn’t know anyone. I’d never been to Australia before. I didn’t know anyone down there, and I was really urning for some sex geek community. People to hang out with and get what I am about and can have a conversation about genitalia without laughing hysterically cause someone said penis.
So I knew a few people who worked in the sexual health world and I wanted a kind of more formalized excuse to see them on a more regualr basis. So I started the first SexGeekdom meet up and bought a URL and put up a Facebook invite, and a whole bunch of sex geeks came out for drinks. We just had a good time, had a couple of cocktails and made a lot of puns. Talked about a lot of latest research and it was awesome. Then we kept doing them twice a month. They are still happening in Melvin even though I’ve leftcauses there’s a whole amazing sexgeekdom army that runs things there.
Cathy: That’s … If you build something it will continue on after you and you could be doing something else, some place else. How about you Ashley how do you build community?
Ashley: I am actually in the process of moving to Las Angeles from Philadelphia which I am completely excited about. When I found out that there was a SexGeekdom Las Angeles chapter I was so thrilled that I was going to have a bunch of sex geeks to hang out with, be goofy with, and talk about sex and condoms and consents, and just like really geek out hard together. It feels so good to be around people that are sex positive and consent aware and things like that. It is just a safer environment in terms of emotional safety, feel comfortable, and know you’ll be supported no matter what.
Kate: Absoultely. You are going to love them and they are going to love you. It’s going to be awesome.
Cathy: So you are walking into a world where there is already a lot of community. You started one but didn’t really have much.
Cathy: When I moved to Dallas I wasn’t finding a lot of community either. That is one of the reasons I started TheIntimacyDojo. It doesn’t matter if you are a sex geek or any other kind of geek or have interests of a certain kind, you can attract people by letting them know you want what you want.
I know I was kind of wait for things to come. The right people will find you and that didn’t work. I was sitting here like pick me, pick me please someone do something and they couldn’t see that from the outside. So meetup.com is great. You can go and just put up a meet up on the topic you’d like and have some people over for coffee at the local coffee shop. That’s a really good way to start connecting with people.
If that is outside your comfort zone … If you can’t find a meet up that’s on your topic, go to ones that are similar and start sharing about your interests. I know that’s scary for a lot of people, but start talking about stuff and you’ll find people like, “Oh me too. We should start a meet-up together,” or “I’ve been thinking about doing a meet-up but I didn’t want to do it myself,” kind of thing.
Ashley: Exactly. We all just found out we are firefly addicts and that has nothing to do with sexuality or being a sex geek. We all love fireflies cause we’re all big ol’geeks.
Kate: There’s a big, significant venn diagram with the sci-fi sex geek.
Cathy: Yeah. So starting doing what you love and start buliding community. Invite people. If you went to a meet-up and you loved what someone shared say, “That was really cool I’d like to talk with you more about that. Would you like to get coffee?” The cool thing is, even if they’re a no they probably will remember you and be touched you invited them. Most people are awkward and shy on the indside.
Kate: I think on of the things that really helped us get started with SexGeekdom was twitter.
Kate: That was how I met Ashley. We met for the first time today in real life.
Kate: With twitter I think it was … I was able to put myself out there with my particular sex-positive message was bout. I think by nature that attracted other people who had a similar kind of message. There are a lot of people in the sexuality field that don’t necessarily have the same perspective that I have. Which is absoultely fine, but in terms of creative community that was what kind of got the ball rolling for me. Finding all the community and a really rich network of people that I adore.
Ashley: It’s like flagging for the internet.
Cathy: So wave your flag proudly, share who you are, what you want, and start connecting with people. When you have a circle of support around you, you can accomplish a lot more.
Ashley: So let us know how you like to build community and what kind of communities you’d like to see built more on the internet and in real life.
Cathy: Let us know if you have any special tips or pointers that work for you please leave them below. Any questions we’ll get back to you. Thanks very much.
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