Yesterday, I reached out to people I worked with in the later part of my career. I needed their help and although I hadn’t seen them in 3 years or more, they were happy to assist. They have always been great to me. I love that!
Throughout our life, these people provide a needed and revered spot.
Connections present themselves in layers.
For instance, if I really need to share what is on my heart, I have a coveted group of people. My GO-TO’s. These are my inner counsel. They know it and accept the job.
The family layer, some of which are already in the above group, know my strengths and weaknesses and are supportive. This group includes all the cousins, aunts and uncles, and their extended family. To immerse yourself in this group is often cathartic yet doesn’t happen nearly enough as it should. This is family. Blood. Important.
But it is like peeling the egg.
Where do others fit?
Networking in this phase of my life is absolutely the best. It is a roller coaster of all the connections of the past. A potpourri of childhood friends, who stop on the street or in restaurants, to catch up. This week alone, I have run into people I haven’t seen since high school, and they are still part of what makes me, me.
They are a layer unto themselves.
Business people in my new job are off shoots of this culture. They have been referred by friends, might know family members, or I may have taught them or their kids in school.
I hope you are getting my drift here.
Although you may not know it, at the time you are with people, your subconscious is making inferences at rapid speeds, Impressions that last a lifetime. Perceptions of you are being manifested based upon eye contact, mannerisms, facial expressions, and the like. All is being computed into a data base that will be connected to you always. From your first steps out the door as a child, how you play, how you treat people, how you share....
These impressions will provide immediate feedback to those around you that will influence:
How much to share? How much to trust? How much to talk? If they want to hang out with you at all?
Robert Wahldinger’s Tedtalk on being connected talks about the richness of life for those who have real and personal relationships of all varieties in life. It is what makes for a GOOD LIFE. In other words, connections matter. All of them.
As young people, entering the work force for the first time or middle school kids contemplating high school even, know that HOW you make connections right now will resonate throughout your entire life. If you choose to be a jerk or a bully now, no matter how hard you try to change it later, it may be too late. Your layer is already locked in.
First impressions are extremely important. But your "reputation might precede you". INITIAL impressions are the ones that will matter most.
As you turn to start thinking about how you would like your future to look, take an inventory of how your past has been,
Is it time to start establishing a new you?
Thanks for listening.