I’ve been thinking a lot lately about the power of connection. Daniel Goleman, author of The New Science of Human Relationships as well as the earlier book Emotional Intelligence, writes “Even our most routine encounters act as regulators in the brain, priming our emotions, some desirable, others not. The more strongly connected we are with someone emotionally, the greater the mental force.”
My daughter, son-in-law, and grandson arrived back in the US just a week ago and I’ve been in mother/grandmother heaven having my family around me. Then as a bonus one of my nieces came to visit too. I feel so blessed to soak in the energy of close family. I know that not everyone has that good fortune. But everyone has the opportunity to create connection. I belong to a few business organizations, Network of Entrepreneurial Women, BNI, and the Bend Chamber of Commerce and the best part of these groups is the people that I get to know. Last night I attended a housewarming party at the home of two women from one of the groups. This morning a man from one of the other groups told me that he started coming to Unity Community (where I’m the minister) to support me, but has continued coming because it’s such a positive connected group.
Connections don’t happen automatically. We have to put energy into the process. I remember being in 9th grade and bemoaning my lack of friends because I hadn’t yet learned to be a friend. I was focused on wanting to get something–“Popularity”–without realizing I needed to give before I could receive. If you put energy into connecting with people you will feel better–and so will they–but if we can believe Goleman, your brain will feel better too!
We can all come up with excuses for why we can’t or won’t connect with one person or another, or people in general. But the truth is our time on this planet is limited and connections matter. They make us rich and strong and happy. To quote an old Ma Bell commercial, stop what you’re doing and “reach out and touch someone”. You’ll be glad you did.