When a job has to be done, it's much easier if it's done in a group. It takes some of the responsibility off one person's shoulders and distributes it to others. While it may be said that networking is overrated, it does have its benefits from time to time.

An army of one doesn't work in an emergency.

Maybe you're a loner. That's how its always been and you don't expect it to be any different in the future. There's nothing wrong with that, except for when an emergency arises. That's the time when you really need a support system to help you when you can't help yourself. Sometimes the support you need is emotional help.

This can come in the form of an ear to listen to you or someone who offers moral support in a bad situation. Other times you need financial support, and you need it from a person who isn't going to use your situation to further their agenda.

Sure, you can do your best, but there are times when your best just isn't good enough. You are only one person and on a day-to-day basis that means handling work and home. Things fall apart and you can't always be the one to handle a tremendous workload.The interesting thing is that work and home can be easy most of the time, except for when you have a child or a dependent. Then, you have to perform the workload for two or more people.

A network of friends

A short while ago, a satire based show aired on the Cartoon Networkcalled The Boondocks. In one episode itmocked what it called, "the hateocracy." This is when a band of negative people (who usually don't even like each other) joined forces because of a mutual need to destroy things and people.

This is obviously not the type of network that anyone should seek to be a part of. However, some people in this "hateocracy" are willing to go to great lengths to support their fellow haters, including lying despite the risk of serving jail time or having another severe penalty levied on them. Once again, this should not be done under any circumstance, but it is interesting that people, who don't even like other people, will band together with an equally disgusting person to accomplish an agenda.Imagine what would happen if they banded together to do something positive?

Good networks are supportive.

On the other hand, a good network should ideally be supportive. They should be the people who step in when you need it most. Many people use networks to obtain jobs or get their children into good schools. This can make networks very powerful. They're casual acquaintances with the power to make your life easier. However, it should be stressed that too much involvement in a network can lead to controlling behavior.

Hateocracy networks.

This is especially true in the "hateocracy"and it's most commonly expressed in gang mentality.

These people have your back, but they also have the dirt on you as well. When you owe them something, they hold it over your head forever, forcing you to do things that you don't want to do. Avoid this situation at all costs. It's unhealthy and in the end, it will cheapen the favor that the network performed for you.

Common goals.

Instead, find people with common goals who are looking to advance themselves and the people around them. Ask them questions and learn from them. In the end, you will make yourself better. Remember, it's not good for anybody to be alone, because we do need other people. If you can find the balance between being an individual and belonging to a group, then you've hit the sweet spot of life.

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