You should be speaking at conferences.
Not an extrovert? Great. Speaking is for introverts!
We go to conferences to meet people (and learn things from people and find opportunities… from people). Meeting people at events takes a lot of energy, especially if you don’t look like the average dude at a conference. You have to explain your story to every single person you talk to, listen to theirs, and try to see if you have overlapping interests. It’s inefficient and takes a lot of time.
By being a speaker, you can tell your story just once, to everyone, and the people who are excited about what you have to say will come find you. You will actually save energy if you get up on stage.
It’s a great hack.
Before you say, “fine, but I’m not good at speaking”, please take a look at this:
People who are way less intelligent than you give excellent talks every day (you might not agree with what they say, but do try to appreciate the skilled delivery). If they can learn to do it, you can learn to do it.
A few years ago, I decided to learn how to speak. I started by studying people whose techniques I admired, and distilling their techniques down into algorithms that I can understand and try to apply to my own presentations. I’m very much a student but have really enjoyed talking to people about giving talks, so I’m going to do an experiment and post one speaking hack per week here on my blog on Fridays. Let me know what you think.