The Key To Connecting With Others


Key To Connecting With Others

Don’t count the number of close relationships you have, count the quality of them.

Don’t talk on automatic pilot. Focus in and listen.

Don’t always offer your opinion. Try asking more questions. Or be silent.

Don’t tell someone else that you know how they’re feeling. You don’t. Just be empathetic.

Don’t ask generic questions. Show a real interest in the other person. Which means that you actually have to ask some personal questions. If you don’t know how to do that, start making a list of ‘questions to ask’.

Don’t grandstand and pretend. Be vulnerable and authentic.

Don’t feel the need to prove your point. Even when you’re 99.9% sure that you’re right, tell the other person ‘ Perhaps’ or ‘You may be right’ when you’re headed towards a heated conversation.

Don’t stay in your head. It will keep you closed down and serious. Rather – take some deep breaths, smile, and focus in on entering a dialogue or ‘just being’ in the presence of another individual with the goals of listening, learning, and connecting.


About Fran

Fran’s book, Digging Deep: Unearthing Your Creative Roots Through Gardening, now considered a classic, was groundbreaking when published as no one had written about gardening in the context of creativity, spirituality, and transformation.

In addition to being a recognized garden expert and deep ecologist, Fran is also a broadcaster, journalist, Ordained Interfaith Minister, and Soul Tender. All of her work is based on her deep belief that our need to connect to the earth is an inherent trait – and that by doing so, we heal and experience more joy in our lives.

, , , , , , , , , ,

6 Responses to The Key To Connecting With Others

  1. Martine Joseph May 23, 2014 at 11:25 am #

    What beautiful advice Fran! I’m striving to ask more questions and listen more deeply. I also want to “get out of my thoughts” and simply be in the present moment with others, sinking into the pleasure of the interaction. Thanks again for this wisdom!

    • Fran May 24, 2014 at 8:09 am #

      Martine- Once you become aware of how much time you’re spending in ‘you head’, it becomes easier to catch it and nudge your ‘thinking’ self to sink into just ‘being’. All it takes is desire and persistence. :) Fran

  2. Cathy Taughinbaugh May 23, 2014 at 7:37 pm #

    Wonderful suggestions here, Fran. It is important to focus on the other person, rather than think about your next comment. Not always easy to do, but worth the effort. Great reminder – thanks!

    • Fran May 24, 2014 at 8:11 am #

      How true. And isn’t it amazing that even though we know that, how easy it is to be in automatic pilot and get ready to respond with our answer without fully listening to another? But it’s only in catching ourselves doing it that we can make the changes – persistence and desire is all it takes to make these changes. Have a beautiful holiday weekend. Fran

  3. David Ryan May 29, 2014 at 10:55 am #

    Sometimes, even the smallest gestures help you connect with others.

    • Fran May 29, 2014 at 11:40 am #

      How true. When you’re a recipient of that ‘small gesture’, it can transform your feelings for the rest of the day. Fran

Leave a Reply