This has been such a difficult period of time in our world. With so many of us mashed together onto our lovely but small planet, the level of stress has pushed people over the edge. Despite the overcrowding, there’s a heightened level of isolation and loneliness. 40% of adults report feeling lonely. Life is a precious thing and every moment offers an opportunity for connection.
In a recent article by John T. and Stephanie Cacioppo, I found a few suggestions that was used with the military to exercise their social muscles:
“Unplug. Find moments each day to put away screens and connect with someone, even for a brief exchange.
Do small favors. Make an effort each day to do something helpful or nice for others. Gratitude is powerful, and some will repay your kindness, making multiple people feel connected and less isolated.
Work together. Find moments each day when you typically divide labor, and choose instead to work together. A simple example of this in daily life is when one partner may do the dishes and the other may fold the laundry at the same time to be efficient. Instead, change things up occasionally, and do each task together. Take the opportunity to speak with and listen to one another and reconnect.
Reach out. Choose to engage with people on different levels and on a range of topics. In meetings or when interacting with colleagues, we tend to focus on what we have in common. Staying close to what everyone knows is comforting, but the quality of our decision-making and the resilience of the group benefit from the diversity of knowledge, experiences, and capacities of the members.
Just say hello. Take a cue from Oprah Winfrey, who is leading a “Just Say Hello” campaign to combat loneliness.”
In an airport waiting area, I took on Oprah’s challenge to just say hello and spoke with one of the service area employees. When I asked how she was doing she confessed that she was distraught over the incident in Las Vegas. We shared a moment of sadness and in our conversation expanded that moment into connection and love. I reminded her that she and I could do something right now, we could choose love; to send love to those families and ensure our everyday interactions were aligned with love. It was a brief, but powerful conversation and as I walked away, she thanked me for taking the time to stop and say hello.
Let’s choose to continue to spread love. Shift our attention away from fear and in our own little (or big) universes; know that our lives and this moment right now counts. Use #CreativeGeniusYOU to choose, and be, love.