Every day, you spend time reading interesting blog posts and comments on HN. This dail habit of yours has (hopefully) helped you accumulate a great wealth of knowledge and tips. (By the way, if you don’t have a list of go-to blogs, I would highly recommend creating one right now.)
Now, here’s a question for you: Have you ever directly reached out, or engaged, with any of these authors whose content you consume? If you’re anything like me, you haven’t. For some reason, until recently, I never, ever, reached out to them. But why? These are people who’s opinions I respect - since I’m reading their content. The answer: I didn’t feel comfortable reaching out. Kind of like speaking with strangers in the subway, it just doesn’t come naturally to me. And then, about a week ago, I decided to change this and email Patrick from Kalzumeus.
Guess what happened? Patrick replied within hours. So put yourself in my shoes: By simply sending out a quick email I was able to get in touch with Patrick, whose work I absolutely admire, and who has provided me with so much invaluable information. To know that engaging on a one-to-one level was only a short email away makes me wonder, why the heck did I wait so long? As I write this blog post it all sounds obvious but until you’re willing to get out of your comfort zone and reach out to “strangers” you will be just like me, a passive reader.
So here’s my challenge to you, don’t be a passive reader. Don’t be that guy (or gal). Next time you’re reading a blog post you enjoy (or an article or comment or whatever), reach out to the author - you never know, maybe you’ll get a response. And maybe, in a distant future, you will have created a new genuine and valuable relationship.