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Friday, March 1, 2013

Creating the Genuine Connections We Long For | Leo Babauta, zenhabits

Included in the description of my blog is the statement, "I like making connections." And "making connections" is one of the blog labels I use most often, according to that label "cloud" in the right-hand column.

That statement is meaningful and motivating to me because I think it inspires creativity. Both intentionally and serendipitously, I like making connections between places, things and ideas because doing so helps me see a different point of view, expand my point of view, or figure out a new or different way to write or do something.

But as Babauta describes in this thoughtful blog, making connections with people is also essential ... for the reasons I mention and for reasons he discusses. In describing why genuine connections are important, he writes, for example:

It boosts creativity. I find that working in solitude is the best way to create, and having some time for solitude is important for reflecting on ideas … but having a genuine discussion with someone is really important for expanding on those ideas. ...
And he writes:
It creates opportunities. I am not in favor of “networking”, but when you make a connection with someone, new opportunities for collaboration and creation emerge that weren’t there before. ...
Babauta continues by describing how to make genuine connections with people. I like all his suggestions, but these stood out for me. The advice is useful in the creativity process not just for connecting with people but also when applied to connecting with places, things and ideas:
Be open to random connections. ... [W]hen I randomly meet someone, I try not to be closed to them. This means opening up, wondering who they are and setting aside any prejudgements that happen, sharing who I am openly and with a smile. I don’t know if this will be a connection to last a lifetime, but it can be one to brighten a moment. ...
Be open to what happens. Many people go into a meeting with someone else with an agenda, and try to get that done. Like it’s a task that needs to be accomplished. But it’s not — a connection with someone else isn’t about productivity or goals. It’s about connection. ... It could be talking about a project, but it could be random topics and ideas, it could be a discussion of what’s been going on in your lives and what you have in common, it could be helping one or the other of you with a problem that you have, it could be a debate of ideas, and so on. ...
Babauta's article is featured today, March 1, in my daily online paper, Garbl's Simple Dreams, available at the Simplicity tab above and by free email subscription.

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