Just recently I went to my first ever CollabMiami meetup. It’s a new meetup in town where the independent professionals in the area get together on a Friday morning each month. The tagline is “Freelancers don’t let freelancers work alone.”

I have to say, I’m pretty excited to see these things popping up. When I started blogging back in 2010 I don’t think anyone even knew what co-working was. Even in 2013 when I’d just quit my job I was craving some sort of meetup and couldn’t find one. The end result is I spent a lot of time at home – something that drives this extrovert insane.

Since joining a co-working space and attending more meetups, I’ve seen some major benefits to having some human interaction as an independent professional. Here are just some of the ways I’ve benefited from co-working.

Collaboration.

Just because you’re an independent professional doesn’t mean you don’t need help every once in a while. In fact, you can help your business grow faster by collaborating.

Since joining my co-working space I’ve seen companies work together on joint ventures. They literally just met over brunch at the office and then decided they could do a project together. One company had something the other company needed and thus a business relationship was made

Opportunity.

Independent professionals need to be at the right place at the right time in order to make things happen. This often times looks like showing up at events, going to conferences and setting lunch meetings.

Since joining my co-working space I’ve been interviewed by their PR team, they’ve shared my stuff on social media and they’ve even asked me to be a speaker for their community speaker series.

Market research.

I spent the majority of the time at the CollabMiami meetup doing some on-the-spot money coaching with another freelancer I met at the event. He was my ideal target audience for a project that I’m working on and I asked if he’d be willing to be a guinea pig. Within a few hours, I had a wealth of information I’m now using to put a big project together.

Get out of the house and meet people.

I spent two and a half years primarily working from home and would use any opportunity I had to dress up – even if it was just to go to the orthodontist. I actually began to miss putting on clothes and leaving the house.

Since beginning to co-work with other independent professionals more often, I have found that my creativity and focus are up just because I’m somewhere new and meeting people. This is especially true on days when no matter how hard I try I can’t seem to get anything done at home.

Just last week I was having one of those days and proceeded to quickly pack up my stuff and go to my co-working space. I still think the only reason the day wasn’t a total loss was because I was able to focus more at the office than I could at home.

Final Thoughts

Independent professionals can benefit from co-working because it gives them opportunity, boosts creativity and helps them meet new people. At the end of the day humans are social creatures and sometimes we need to be around others in order to get our work done.

Amanda Abella is a full-time writer who specializes in online business and finance. She's also an online business coach and the Amazon best-selling author of Make Money Your Honey.

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