A Quick Connection


Are you a “hello” person or an “avoid eye contact” person?

Focused On Your Phone?
The other day while I was walking around NYC, I noticed that no one even looks up anymore because their eyes are focused on their phones. We walk around like little machines connected to our screens. Why would anyone look up to see a friend and say hello. You certainly wouldn’t bother to greet a stranger because there’s no time for interaction anyway.

Make a Connection
I’m not a bright, cheery “good morning” person, but I’m striving to say a simple “hello” to people. I’m grateful that I’m around them and want to connect. This doesn’t mean I’m going to tell you my life story, but if we share a close space, (like a plane or an elevator), I’ll say hello and acknowledge that we are there together.  I’ve actually made some great friends that way.

I met my friend Tom on a half hour flight from Detroit to Cleveland. We nodded and eventually introduced ourselves. Now we are friends because we found something in common. He works at Cleveland Clinic in my hometown. If we hadn’t talked, I never would have had this interesting person in my life. A simple “hello” is all it took.

What Makes Us Feel Good?
Are we so self-absorbed that we can’t acknowledge a hello because it takes too much time and effort? Is it too difficult to say “thank you?”. On the other hand, is that really what makes us feel good?

I thought about the person who doesn’t give a “thank you wave” in traffic. So what if they didn’t respond to my kindness? Even if they didn’t wave, I would still feel good, knowing I helped ease their frustration. I didn’t do it for the ‘wave”.

Sure, it’s nice to get a response, but I wouldn’t get bent out of shape if there were none. I don’t go away feeling rejected. I just laugh because I know something they don’t know, the power of a quick hello or an acknowledgement. It’s a true gift to make little connections and I’m grateful for them.

Looking for more ways to find calm amidst the chaos?  Read Jim’s book Soothe and listen to the collection of Soothe CDs.