Opening yourself up to others can be one of the most difficult things one can do. Especially in modern times, when people tend to try and get to know each other through virtual means before even meeting in person. When I was growing up, making a connection with someone meant actually meeting them face-to-face, introducing yourself and talking to them. Friends, associates and intimate relationships were forged this way.
These days, people meet dates online, join chat rooms and see each other for the first time through the digital frontier. Where spotting someone from across the room in a coffee shop and smiling at them would have been a first steps twenty years ago is basically considered creepy today, despite the fact that you genuinely never know who you’re meeting online until you see them in person, often with disappointment. In fact, there are entire shows about that very thing that you can watch.
Why am I bringing this up? Well, because as living creatures, there’s an energy that binds us all. That energy is called “connection,” and it’s something one can only truly accomplish by being physically present in the moment with another person. As one could no doubt agree, the problem with the online world is that you can be “connected” with thousands of people but still feel completely isolated and alone.
“Connection is the energy that exists between people when they feel seen, heard and valued; when they can give and receive without judgment; and when they derive sustenance and strength from the relationship.”– Brene Brown
Being connection with someone else is more than physically being somewhere with them. There also has to be a trust, a comfort level, an ability to know that no matter what you say or do, that person won’t walk away from you or judge you. This isn’t an easy thing, especially in light of the modern world’s propensity to be overly sensitive and offended by everything. But a good baseline to know if you’ve made a solid connection with someone is to ask yourself if you would be comfortable doing something in front of them that you would usually only do alone. If the answer is yes, you can have confidence that some trust has been developed; at least to a certain degree.
Connections are important. Humans were never meant to be solitary, isolationist creatures. Even those who often claim they prefer to be alone still need others to one extent or another. And while that need is very real, making connections and building trust are integral parts of ensuring one’s wellbeing and health. Food for thought…☯️