Relationship, Spirituality

Engaging vs. Connecting

Living true to yourself takes a certain level of vulnerability. It takes guts to put yourself out there in a truly authentic way – in a no holds barred kinda way.

To some, I can be considered a bit of a walking contradiction. Sometimes I’ll curse to get my point across *insert Tribe Called Quest reference here* and in the same conversation, I’ll refer to good energy and positivity. Those two ways of thinking are not mutually exclusive to me. They are, in fact, essentially – me. To those who can’t understand that, that’s cool. But we probably wouldn’t work well together. We’re not likely to be the best of friends. And that’s fine because connecting with people who share the same values and outlook in the world creates some seriously amazing and impactful stuff.

When you engage with others and omit things, habits or censor thoughts that are true to who you really are, you’re not bringing yourself to the plate. You might be engaging but you’re not connecting. And that’s a big difference.

It’s easy to engage someone in a situation or conversation. But if you’re not connecting, you won’t stand a chance at making the impact you’re looking for. The connection is what makes the other person/people get where you’re coming from. You want them to get on your side, to see your point of view and become your advocate.

There’s a distinctive energy present when you create a connection. I recently sat down with someone to discuss ways to work together. We were randomly laughing and high fiving through the whole meeting. We were learning about each other as we were working out the details of a plot to make a dent in the universe by teaching the skills we’ve learned over the years; that’s connection. When you’re ok with acting like a kid because you’re excited to hatch an awesome business plot. When you’re almost finishing each other’s sentences or inspiring each other by throwing in something unexpected that resonates with you both so much that you feel better than a kid in a candy store; that’s connection.

Connection happens when everyone involved puts their fear of ‘looking stupid’ or ‘being wrong’ aside. Connection happens when everyone comes to the plate with exactly what makes them unique.

The next time you connect with someone, make a note as to what you’re connecting about. Realize how you feel when you’re connecting. And chase that feeling.

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