One of the most meaningful things in a person’s life are those they are closest to. From friends and family, to the neighbor they can count on to let their dog out, relationships are part of what defines us as humans and brings value to our lives. Whether we are talking about transactional relationships like a bank teller, or a lifelong friend, meaningful connections are one of the most highly valued things in life. Let’s uncover some effective ways to determine, make and keep meaningful connections in your life.
Discover Common Interests – As you go through life, you may discover some interests change while others stay the same. This is a crucial part of developing meaningful connections. From the person who casually plays golf, to the avid sports fan, there are a wide variety of people with varying ranges of interests. We often make more meaningful connections with the people we can relate to. Make an effort to not only be relatable but seek out people who share your own interests.
Practice Honesty – Honesty is one of the most important traits that can be found in a person. As you develop connections, you will discover most meaningful connections stem from honesty and authenticity. Surrounding yourself with honest people can be an incredibly valuable part of your life.
Be Considerate of Others – In some ways, this world simply goes by too fast. For some, it can be all they have just to keep up. Taking time to see others around you and consider their needs is a perfect way to make new connections. Whether it be professionally in a meeting, socially at a restaurant, or just living life, taking a moment to look around the room and ask yourself, “how can i help someone today?”
Invest Your Time – As you consider the connections in your life, take time to evaluate who is bringing value to your life. Determining who is bringing value into your life can help you hone in on those connections and strengthen them going forward.
Practice Deep Conversations – There are many forms of communication. From the casual water cooler talk, to intensive debate and everything in between. While there is a place for varying types of conversations, many make the mistake of avoiding thoughtful, deep conversations. This mistake often leaves others thinking you are not interested in them or are unwilling to get to know them. While not all connections are the same, intentionally practicing deep conversations can further grow a connection and foster mutual trust.
Learn to be Patient – In the culture of GB internet and 5G phones, it can be easy to imagine we will have meaningful connections out of thin air. The reality is more nuanced. For many people, the most meaningful connections are the ones fostered over time. Don’t try to rush that connection you just made, take a deep breath and let it develop.
We all need people who care about us in life. Not only do we need friends and family, but we desire to have connections around us. Throughout one’s life, there are many types of relationships one will make. From the favorite barista that always gets your coffee just right, to your realtor, attorney, counselor or childhood mentor. Developing these connections is one of the best ways for you to not only invest in your career, but enhance your personal life as well.