Life boils down to a series of connections.
How we connect to our family and friends.
The connection we have to our past, problems, and pain.
Think about this,
your life will improve or worsen based on the strength of your connections.
Some connections you will want to strengthen.
Like our connection to people.
That needs strengthening.
How are the connections in your life?
Over the years something has become very evident to me.
we are lonely and empty devoid of feelings of love.
It hurts when we are not connected to someone we care about. I don’t know about you, but I die a little on the inside every time I am disconnected from the people I love.
There was a study done in 1944 about the need for connection and nurturing for the human soul.
The experiment involved 40 newborn infants. The experiment tried to determine if people could thrive without connection and nurturing. 20 newborns, placed in a special facility, had their basic needs met. The only interaction the babies had was to change their diapers and clothes and to feed them. That was all that happened. There was no conversation. There was no physical connection. They were not even allowed to look at them in the eyes.
They were being raised without human connection.
The environment was sterile and clean. The babies seemed to be in good physical health. The experiment stopped after 4 months.
At that time 10 babies had died. They rescued the other 10 babies. Adopted into a natural family environment. At least 2 more of them died. There was no “cause” for their deaths. They were in good physical health.
Before each infant died there was a period when they would stop interacting. They would stop verbalizing and trying to engage with their caregivers. A short time later, they would stop moving altogether. The babies would not cry and their expressions stayed the same. When the infants exhibited this behavior death would follow.
This is an atrocity. It is evil. To even think about putting these babies through this.
It did show something important.
In comparison, the 20 babies who raised under “normal” conditions thrived. There were no deaths reported.
The human race cannot survive without connecting to one another.
Connection creates conversation.
Conversation Creates intimacy.
A relationship needs intimacy.
It is dead because there is no connection.
Connection is the lifeblood of our relationships.
Without it, our relationships will wither and die.
The Bottom Line:
We crave connection.
Look at the number of affairs that are happening.
Why do you think that they happen?
Reason: People don’t feel connected to their partner so they find someone they can connect to.
Ignoring connection in our relationships and neglecting our partners sends a statement.
We are saying, “I don’t value you enough to make time to connect with you.”
What do you think will happen if the neglect continues?
You will find someone else to connect with. Someone who will make you feel valued.
People crave connection.
If we won’t give it to them they will find it elsewhere.
When you or I experience disconnection we will try to look for it in other places.
A relationship devoid of connection is a relationship that is devoid of life.
There is no getting around it.
The lifeblood of relationships is connection.
When I am disconnected from my wife I begin feeling empty, lonely, frustrated, and even angry.
The longer I am disconnected the greater these feelings.
If I go a long time without connecting with my wife then I am in danger of moving from disconnected to unconnected.
When I am UNCONNECTED then there is no relationship. We are two people living under the same roof. It feels closer to roommates than lovers.
Once I get to the unconnected stage the next step is moving to the divorce stage.
You cannot have relationship without connection.
It is as important as the very air you are breathing.
I can say the same thing about my relationship with Jesus. When I am disconnected from the source of my life I will experience a plethora of emotions. Emotions ranging from anger to loneliness. There may be even feelings of abandonment because we tend to blame God when we disconnect.
When we disconnect from Jesus we become distant.
If we do not take care of the distant feelings they will lead us from disconnected to unconnected.
Feeling unconnected will cause us to walk away from God.
In reality, any relationships that we disconnect from will make us feel distant. Distance breads feelings of emptiness and loneliness. These feelings will push us towards living unconnected. When we live in a relationship that is unconnected we are one step from walking away from it.
Think about the relationships that you admire the most.
What makes them great?
Answer: The depth of their connection
Benefits of Connecting:
1. I am valued by someone.
If you have ever said, “You don’t love me” what you meant was that you feel that you are not valued. You do not feel valued because you do not feel connected.
2. I know that the person listens to me.
Not only do they listen to me, but I know that they hear and understand what I am trying to communicate.
3. Most Important: I have a sense of belonging.
There is a correlation between disconnection and having a sense of not belonging.
Meaning: If you are not connected you don’t feel like you belong.
When I am connected I develop a sense of belonging.
We need to feel like we belong.
Connection is the best way to develop that sense of belonging.
As I wind down this post. I want to leave you with a few quick steps to increase your ability to connect.
1. Take time to Listen
It is the greatest feeling in world when I know someone is listening to me. That means they not only hear the words coming from my mouth, but they are hearing the words from my heart.
To do this we will have to become ACTIVE LISTENERS.
Active listening requires the listener to concentrate on the speaker. This type of listening requires us to listen to understand. Active listening also says that we should ask clarifying questions.
2. Engage in the conversation
In my life, I have noticed that one of the greatest ways to connect is to engage in the conversation.
Engaging goes hand in hand with active listening.
I have seen it over and over.
Here is a truth (I am not sure who said it first):
People don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care.
How do they know that you care?
Because you have spent time listening to them. You have spent time engaging them.
When they know you care they will open up to having beautiful conversations.
What does an engaging conversation look like?
It’s all about hosting the conversation
a. Be present in the conversation.
The conversation inside of yourself can be distracting. Instead of being present in the conversation you focus on the internal conversation. This will kill your engagement.
You will never be present if you are always playing on your phone. Put down the electronics, look people in the eyes, and start great conversations.
b. Creating talking points through asking questions.
Asking questions helps guide the conversation. You don’t know how powerful questions can be until you learn to ask them.
The greatest conversational engagement stems from well-placed questions.
Learning to ask great questions is an art form as well as a science.
c. Learn to ask open-ended questions.
An open-ended question is a question that doesn’t end in a one-word answer. An open-ended question allows the person to engage in meaningful conversation.
Close-ended question: Are you feeling better today?
Open-ended question: What is your favorite memory from childhood?
It is time to reevaluate the strength of our relationships. If they are not strong enough then let’s commit to strengthen them.
How do we strengthen our relationships?
We strengthen them by connecting on deeper levels.
The decisions is yours.
Here is what I want you to do next.
1. Subscribe to this blog.
It would be an honor to continue this journey with you.
2. Enter the contest
I am giving away 2 copies of The 5 Love Languages. What an awesome opportunity to increase your engagement. You can join here: https://gleam.io/VAKGY/win-a-copy-of-the-5-love-languages
3. Comment below
It would love to have you join the conversation. I love hearing different perspectives, tips I did not cover, and how I can add more value to you. I reply to every comment 🙂