How To Attract Your Connection

It was one of those days that I instinctively knew was going to be a long day. After a busy 3-day event, I was eager to get home. So, it was with an air of delight that I boarded the bus home. The journey started smoothly. It was restful, at least for me. I had my noise-canceling earplugs on. From my sitting position, I could see the hustle and bustle of some other passengers. Movement almost dancelike, with my earplugs on. I turned to the window, eager to enjoy the view of downtown before we journey onto quieter roads.

After a long 2-hour journey, we stopped at a bus station. I had deliberately sat at the back, with the hope of finding some calm. Two rows from the end of the bus. I was reading "The Power of Now" by Eckhart Tolle. I was deep in thought, reminiscing over some paragraphs. So, it took me a couple of moments to acknowledge the older lady that was asking me if she could sit beside me. "Of course," I said, removing my earplugs. The space was occupied by my handbag, which I had intentionally kept there. I gingerly moved it to the coach floor.

From the moment she sat down, she asked me like five questions in one minute. After she introduced herself, of course. And I politely returned the gesture. She told me where she was from. Then, proceeded to tell me how her day had been. She was coming from her daughter’s place in the city. She was now on her way home in the suburbs. Her daughter, a 22-year-old college student, is planning to get married soon. So many personal details in such a short while, I thought. I wasn't interested. I wanted to get back to my book. So, I pointedly opened it again and started reading. I was hoping my body language would be clear.

After a couple of other comments which were just met by a smile from me, she turned to the man by her right on the other side of the bus. She asked him the first question she asked me "where are you from?". Aha... I thought. She got the message. The man was eager to speak to her. She ignored me. I put back my earplugs.

Over the next 45 minutes or so to the end of our journey, I couldn't help noticing their connection. I got interested. It was hard not to, with the occasional bouts of laughter and visible hand gestures. I removed my earplugs, my eyes fixated on my book, with rapt attention to their chat. They literally talked about everything. From their spouses to kids to pets and so on. By the time the bus was nearing the last station, they were exchanging contact information and smiling at each other like long-term friends. It was apparent they found pleasure in each other’s company. Almost like a drowning person that was rescued by a lifeguard in the swimming pool. The guard is willing to help. He wants to do a good deed. The drowning person hangs on to him as if her life depends on it. And it does. She is grateful.

When I was growing up, one of the things I noticed about my mom was her ability to cultivate relationships. She is what I call an “extroverted entrepreneur”. She would go to events back-to-back. I believe the relationships she built at those events helped her businesses in one way or the other. My mom taught me that we are created as human beings to connect. Not to do life alone. I learned from her how to intentionally channel some part of my energy to socialize (a lesson I failed to practice on that bus, which I’m now reminded of) – how to carve out some part of my time to interact with others. I’m reminded that this has the power to prevent tunnel vision. When we interact with others, we’re able to collaborate. This can ensure that you collaborate with the people that will be able to serve what you need and vice versa.

There was something authentic in the connection that I witnessed on that bus. And, it further grounds my belief that indeed, we must connect to witness authenticity. Our appearances can make a good first impression, but our dialogues, which come from within, make a lasting impression. This creates an authentic connection. Authentic connection is like a magnet – it draws you; you’re drawn to it. This has demonstrated to me that –   if you offer a connection to someone and they seem unresponsive, turn to another. Don't be discouraged by a rejection from an attempt. Move on to the next. You may attract your connection.

Worry can weigh a person down, but an encouraging word cheers a person up. 'Cornish’s Cheer' hopes to be an encouragement to people who are under pressure, feel lonely, discouraged, or rejected. I hope these writings impart cheer, and hope and help you flourish with patience, love, and sincerity. Be encouraged and cheered. Also, practice 'chanting' positive affirmations, which can be a powerful tool to help boost confidence.

Nothing in this blog is intended to serve as life, career, health, or financial advice. Do your own research.