I’m so grateful for the friends I’ve made online — they’re some of my best. But the reason they’ve become some of my favorite people is not because we’ve kept our friendship through the screen, it’s because we get together in person.

The longer I’ve done this online work, the more I appreciate my offline time spent cultivating my relationships. There are seasons in life when it’s hard to get out and sit across a table from a 3D human, but when those seasons pass, I’ve found it good and wise to make ample time to close the screen and walk out my front door.

This is why going to Nest Fest, like I did this past weekend, is so refreshing — because I’m in the same room with the people I work and play.

It’s why I go out of my way to schedule a coffee date with a friend every few weeks.

It’s why Literary London is one of my favorite things I do in my work now — because I get to work away from my screen and walk through parks with flesh-and-bone people who are no longer tiny avatars.

And it’s why I’m testing out a new idea this weekend with a few patrons — we’re gathering from all over the country to my quaint small town to hang out and talk. I’ll be doing some group coaching with everyone, but we’ll also just enjoy each other’s company over barbecue, Tex-Mex, and breakfast tacos.

Online relationships and hangout spaces are great. But they’re even better when you remember that no one fully lives in the digital world. Connecting in-person is where it’s at.

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