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December 14, 2010

Practicing Connection

Being in connection can be really hard to do. We don’t have lots of practice at it Oh sure, there are attempts, an example is what I call corporate connection – connection at work. It usually look like lots of eye contact and close listening. But actually, the eye contact is more of a stare-through. You’re not meeting the eyes of the other person, you actually staring right through them and looking at the wall behind them. It’s a power contest – not actual connection.

So let’s practice making and breaking connections. It’s really easy to practice and opportunities happen all the time. Next time you’re in the grocery store try practicing with the checkout clerk. Rather than the perfunctory greeting, try meeting the clerk’s eyes and saying a genuine hello. Nothing fancy, just hello. Try for just a second to see the human instead of the checkout clerk. This connection doesn’t have to be very long – just a second or two. In fact anything longer gets to be a bit creepy.

When you’re done and ready to leave, practice breaking the connection by saying goodbye and leaving. Again, nothing fancy, just practice establishing and breaking connection.  We often think that connection is this big deal that leads from saying hello right into getting married. And that assumption often keeps us out of connection. If we practice starting and stopping connection in our everyday life, you’ll be amazed at how your interactions develop.

You’ll also begin to have more confidence when making connections that are more important to you!

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