I think I speak for many of us when I say I want to connect deeply in 2019
I want my relationships to go far beyond the superficial. Rather than going an inch deep with a mile long list of ‘friends’, I would much rather go a mile deep with 2 or 3 particular people.
In my pursuit of delving deeper, I have begun to implement ways to build connection with people in my life. As we all know life gets busy, and if you are like me, you are driven and highly motivated to succeed. So I have to be intentional about changing my life and instilling habits that prioritise connection with those that I love.
Below are three things I have started to implement this year to build connection.
1. Make a ‘no agenda’ phone call.
Have you ever thought of a friend or family member (who you love) however don’t pick up the phone to call them, as you don’t have any ‘reason’ to call. Moreover it has been so long since you last spoke that there is just too much to catch up on. You don’t have the time and energy for a ‘long’ chat, so you decide not to call at all?
This used to happen to me all the time. And still does
Before long it has been weeks, even months since I have talked to beloved friends. In the last year I have started to just call. No text messaging. But calling. For no reason! I just call to say Hi. I talk about my day. I ask them about theirs. I keep it brief. Everyone is busy. And I tell them that I love them. Then we hang up.
A ‘no agenda’ call!
It is incredible how quickly these calls build connection. What I love about them is that they are not ‘catch up’ calls. You don’t have to rattle on about how the last 2 months have been. They are calls where you are talking about your day and what has happened in the last couple of days. You ask them what they are doing right at that moment! They are short and brief. And the next time you think of that person, it is not too hard to quickly call them again.
If they don’t answer then I leave a text or a voice mail telling them it was a no agenda call and there is no need to call back! Super easy right?!
2. Have someone for dinner
Growing up in a multicultural family, with a Filipino mother and a Srilankan father I have seen firsthand the power of hospitality in building deep connections. In our family our table was huge. Everyone was welcome and the food was abundant. In our home, sitting around the dinner table, for one night, people were nourished with food and adopted in the warmth of our family love.
Everyone is busy. Having someone over for dinner can seem too hard. However, it is actually the best way to spend your time. It is one of the most powerful ways to build connection.
This year Mark and I are setting one night a week to have dinner with people who are in our lives who we deeply care about
Perhaps that is something you could try? You don’t have to do it weekly! You could start with monthly? You could start with the same people every month? We have already found this deeply rewarding. There is something beautiful about inviting people into your home and enjoying a meal together. There is nothing like it. It doesn’t have to be complicated! Later this week I will write on how to host the easiest dinner party! And believe me the rewards are relentless.
3. Remember the small details
Have you ever received a gift, note or had someone do something for you that showed you how that person must actually know you and deeply care about you? For example I received this incredible array of gifts once, awaiting me at my house. My husband was away and my girlfriend had done a few groceries for me. She had all of my favourite treats and staples. Even down to the brand of ricotta that I loved at the time. She had my favourite fruits (watermelon and mango) things I used all the time in cooking as well as a beautiful card. The gift’s attention to detail was so astounding, that even years later I remember it.
When you feel known by your friends it just makes you feel so much safer to open your heart and connect. For you know you can trust someone who takes the time to care and love the small details about you.
I love to notice the small details. I love to notice what foods my friends eat, the earring style they wear, the brand of drink they like. Sometimes I’ll ask them what their favourite chocolate or cake is. Once noted, I file it away in my mind for later use. At a later time I can surprise them.
For example, one of our best friends loves to cook and loves to learn about a variety of cooking cuisines. He had been interested in learning to cook my style of curry. One a day off, I went and got our special curry paste that is the secret ingredient to my curries. I got the other ingredients that he needed and made him the curry at his house. I left the curry paste there with instructions of how to cook it next time.
Other times I will randomly ask my friends what their favourite food is. What instils childhood memories for them? What tells a story for them? Then when I have them over for dinner, I attempt to replicate this.
It is the little things, the small details, noticed and understood, that make a difference in building a deep trust.
There you have it. Three things that I do to build connection. Are these some things you would do?
Are there any things you do already? I would love to hear!
In other news I am now full time in my own business launching out in Personal Lifestyle consultancy! Available for the hiring if you would love to start reigning in your life in exercise, health and stewardship read more here!
Until next time you are deeply loved and richly cherished.
Reign In Life