How to Help Your Loved Ones Feel Less IsolatedMar 24, 2023
“Connection is the key to fulfilment.”
“Loneliness is not just the physical absence of people, it is the sense you are not sharing anything meaningful with anyone else.” Johann Hari
This is why it's so vital to learn the skill of deep connection.
To listen for the emotions behind the words.
To embody openness so people feel calm in your presence.
To give people the space to tell you everything.
Quality social connections have the power to help you heal, grow and create the joy you crave. And compassion creates these connections.
Classic studies from Robert Waldinger and Martin Seligman demonstrate the importance of relationships for our happiness, health and well-being. They can enhance our immunity and cardiovascular system and regulate our nervous system.
Anyone in business knows that business is predominantly about building relationships.
As a leader or entrepreneur, it can be challenging because you can feel a sense of responsibility for your loved ones' pain. You may also feel disconnected because most people no longer share the same wins or losses as you - you feel different.
The principles in this video have helped my clients open up about disconnection with their children, communicate better with their staff and even heal negative relationships with their parents.
Here are three simple in-person compassionate communication tips -
1. Heart-Centred Pose
A few months ago, I was completely engrossed in a book by Harvard communication expert Nick Morgan. I was eager to apply the principles of the 'heart-centred pose'.
Imagine being in the middle of a hub of writers, entrepreneurs and thought-leaders in the break of an event. Who do you talk to? How do you connect?
I thought I would try Nick Morgan’s 'heart-centred pose' (more on this in the video). In the space of a few days I made some deep connections with people from the UN, interesting thought-leaders and joyful people.
It was powerful.
Try standing differently when engaging with a closed-off person. Say the words to yourself, “open connected presence”, and watch them respond to your intentions. It's like magic.
After all, it's thought that our body represents 55% of communication.
2. Tell Me Everything
Interestingly, a friend I connected with at the writer’s workshop had an incredible phrase which I now use to help someone open up -
“People feel isolated not only when they cannot share their pain with you, but also when they cannot not share their joy with you.”
Next time someone shares a win with you, try the phrase, “Tell me everything.” Watch the magic that occurs.
3. Be Mindful of Their Body
Get curious with the words behind their words. My coach is a master of this - seeing beyond the initial lines of communication. There are always two conversations going on - the one out loud and the one in someones head.
Encourage people to tell you what's going on beneath the surface and watch them relax, open and feel connected in your presence. There is immense value in that.
As leaders and entrepreneurs it's essential to never forget these 'soft skills' for your loved ones and your staff.
Get in touch to let me know what resonated, what your biggest insight was and where you need more support.
I look forward to hearing from you.
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