When you’re on a journey alone, everything is up to you. While this can give you great flexibility, it also comes with its own challenges. If you feel tired, you need to find the internal will to keep going. If you feel blocked, you need to figure out what to do next. If you feel unsure about which direction to go, you have nobody to consult.
Cohorts completely change the situation. Instead of having to only rely on your internal motivation, you gain energy and inspiration from your peers. Instead of languishing for days or weeks when you’re stuck, you can bounce ideas off your teammates. Instead of being stuck by analysis paralysis, those in your cohort can help you gain clarity.
Cohorts also just make work a lot more fun. Knowing that you have others to support you, discuss with you, and celebrate with you makes the journey so much more pleasant. I’ve had the privilege of being part of a few cohorts (such as PSI and the Carbon Almanac), and I can attest that it feels like you’re part of something special and significant.
The tricky part is finding a cohort. If you’re lucky enough to receive an invitation to one, seriously consider accepting it. But barring that, you can start one. The work then is in infusing it with the right energy and people that it becomes self-sustaining. This does take a lot of upfront work on your part, but if you find the right people, it will be a special group.
If you’re like I was and prefer being a lone wolf, consider joining a cohort. Yes, it requires investing time and energy into something which isn’t directly your work, but I’d wager that you will find the connection and community to be worth the trade. Momentum is so important in creative work of all kinds, and being part of a cohort provides exactly that.