I’ve been living in Singapore with my wife Nicole for the last year and a half now, and we have been
having some very real conversations around how we are feeling here.
Through our conversations, we’ve realized that there is a very big difference between connecting with someone and actually relating with someone.
Watch this video to see how to powerfully leverage that difference to impact your business and leadership.
What are we looking for? Are we feeling connected, supported and embraced by those around us? What came up was really a conversation around the depth of friendships that we have made here and also in New York.
The Desire to Connect
Whenever I talk to my pioneers out there, I find that this comes up a lot where we operate from a place
of choosing to connect with someone; how do I connect with them? I just want to make a connection.
I’m looking for more connections out there and in figuring out who we need to be in order to connect
better with others.
We end up often missing what we are really looking for. We are really looking to be
seen, to be understood, to be recognized, to be appreciated for who we are and to be able to have
conversations with people who get us.
From that perspective, we can get to wherever it is that we are looking to go next and when we choose to
pursue and optimize connectedness, what we end up doing is actually saying; how can we find some common ground between us?
That common ground oftentimes is based on an externality. What job do you have? What are you interested in? Where did you grow up? What places have you traveled and so on and so forth. That comes up a lot in our lives nowadays and it ends up being this thing where people can feel connected.
Then I’ll talk to pioneers who are out there and trying to do something very different in the world and a common theme comes up where others feel like; “I’m not really finding anyone that really stimulates
me, that I really can feel I could be great friends with. I can connect with a lot of people; I’m going out,
I’m having dinners, I’m talking to people, I’m meeting people on a regular basis etc. but we’re not
building a relationship.
Relationships over Connections
I just want to speak a bit about the loneliness of optimizing for a connection because while it’s
something that we are proposing, is it what we’re looking for? What we’ve seen is that we are looking for
something much deeper which is relationship and relatedness.
The difference that I found when it comes to being connected and being related is that when you’re looking to optimize for a connection there’s an external focus but when you’re looking to relate, it’s an internal focus.
What I mean by the internal focus is that there’s a focus on your emotions or focus on how you
feel around things and you’re sharing that openly, you’re allowing your emotions into the conversation because they belong in a real relationship. Only people who really know you may be able to get a chance
to see those emotions.
This is something that I have found to be a complete game-changer as I’ve been meeting people out
here and really being able to be known for who I am and be able to create business relationships and
clients from that perspective.
I have had people reach out to me and invite me into their communities to come and speak and so on because from the very beginning I choose a relationship and not connection.
So I just want to point out this here; if you’re finding that you’re working really hard to fit in or to be
connected, I’m inviting you to stop and instead rather than focusing on the things that will make you
connect externally, go to the things that you internally relate on and allow it to happen.
I’ll be honest with you; it is not easy but the rewards are quite worth it.
Go ahead and let me know about that one place where you found choosing relation over connection has benefited you and we will go on from there.
Here’s to your next frontier – Journey On!