Simon Sinek human skills are missing nowadays. Connection – a challenge for you.
Richard Branson interviewed Simon Sinek recently. He asked, "if you were starting a business right now – what problem would you solve?"
Simon's response, “The problem I would like to help solve these days is how we relate to each other.”
He went on to say, "We're living in a time when we're more judgemental, we're bad at listening, we think things are black and white, when, in reality, they're mostly grey. I think there are a lot of human skills that are missing. I would love to teach us all to be a little more human."
(You can listen to the interview here.)
For a long time now, Sinek has been talking about the importance of human skills and connection. He understands that we’re driven to look for it. Right now, the world is off balance. People are scared. They’re angry. They’re confused. They’re lonely. Connection is hard to find.
In my latest book Lead Beyond 2030, I share how Empathy is at a 30 year low, and how your human skills are essential for your success.
We’re dealing with the results of low connection right now. It’s not physical isolation that’s at the heart of the problem; it’s emotional isolation.
Why is it an issue now? I think we’ve become very technology focused to the detriment of our relationships. How often do you see people out for dinner with their phones on the table? How many people are engrossed in their devices on public transport? How many walk the streets while texting? How many keyboard warriors have you seen on social media?
By engaging only one area of our brains, we’re letting the other neural pathways deteriorate. I believe it’s showing already in the way we judge each other all the time. We’re critical and less tolerant than we used to be.
What happened to eye contact and casual conversations?
We crave human connection. The human brain is wired for connection, but it relies on social clues for signs of a willingness to engage. It looks for signs like eye contact, a smile, a greeting as you meet. With our attention caught by our devices, we don’t even notice the people around us. We can’t relate to someone we don’t see.
The connection challenge.
Today I’d like to challenge you to do things differently for one week to see how it affects your feelings of connection.
Challenge 1. When you use public transport or when you're out walking around, put away your phone, your book, your newspaper. Look around you. Smile at the people who travel regularly on the bus or train with you or the people you see when you're on your walk, or when you go to pick up lunch etc. You might even say hello.
Challenge 2. Join your team for coffee at least once this week - after work, at tea break or remotely using Zoom. Don’t talk work. Just chat like we used to.
Challenge 3. Help someone who needs it. Carry a bag for them, explain how to do something, visit someone lonely, check up on someone you’re worried about. Do something for someone else. It will make you both feel good.
This challenge won’t change the world, but it might help you connect again with the people around you. Try it. Perhaps you can then create a similar challenge within your team.
Shifting our focus from ourselves to others helps us find a place in the world. We’re all human and we need each other. By reconnecting, we redevelop the skills we need for coping with human relationships with dignity.
Need help to start connecting again? Reach out and let me help you.
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