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  • Writer's pictureTingbin Tang

Step Out of The Valley, Start to Reach Out

According to op-ed columnist and author David Brooks, our society is in the midst of a social crisis, and we’re trapped in a valley of isolation and fragmentation. How do we find our way out?

Many people have more or less shyness or even social anxiety, especially if it is a stranger. Also, for many years, we have been warned not to talk to strangers. However, besides loneliness, people also have longingness deep in their heart. People are longing for belonging to, for love and care, for friendship and understanding. So how do we help more people to step out of the valley, and start to reach out?

Imagine you walk into a room with all strangers, and you may feel a little awkward. But if everyone has a name tag on him/her, that will help a lot, right? Or even on the tag, you even know a little bit more about him/her, e.g. what he/she does, and which company he/she work for? That will bring even more topics, right? And with that information, it also gives you credibility and feels more comfortable. Furthermore, what if you even know what he/she is offering or seeking for here, so you know his/her purpose of being here, will you feel even more open to talk to someone who you are interested in what he/she is offering; or you may even eager to talk to someone there, who is here and seeking for something while you happen to have what he/she need. Isn’t that amazing? Well, that is exactly what Nearal app can bring to you.

A Silicon Valley based company is challenging Facebook and Linkedin, and came out with this app, Nearal, which is aiming for local professional networking. At this app, it is easy to browse or search professionals in the same city, and everyone has a virtual tag, showing his/her name, profession, and intention. If Facebook is for people to share timeline stories with old friends, Linkedin is for people to share and update resumes, Nearal is for people to reach out, to social, to make friends, to build a local professional network. If Yelp is a site for people to rate a business, then Nearal is an app for people to rate individuals’ professional services. If Airbnb is for people to stay at a stranger’s home, Nearal is an app for people to say hi to a stranger.

As Shirley Maclaine said, “Fear makes strangers of people who would be friends.” Now with Nearal app, more and more strangers become friends. They “meet” each other on Nearal, say hi via Nearal, they may become friends in real life since they are both local. According to a social survey, one-third of Americans do not interact with their neighbor. What a sad number. Now with Nearal app, I am sure this number will decrease dramatically.

Nearal’s icon is a smiling raccoon. A raccoon is someone who always around your neighborhood but you have been ignoring them. Now with Nearal app, we believe more and smiling faces will be showing on the neighborhood.

Now let us step out of the valley with Nearal app, (Available at: App Store and Google Play) and start to weave our own local smile network. Cheers!)

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