Summer is upon us and with the new season comes longer, slower, more simple days full of sunshine and making memories. Have you taken advantage of these summer days without overthinking, over planning, or over exerting yourself? I for one have not. If I’m speaking honestly, I didn’t do too well in the month of June. After a recent job change I’ve found myself having to network and socialize more frequently which in turn has created a desperate need to make intentional connections. Not the phony, fake, “What do you do for a living?” talks that leave you feeling even lonelier and empty, but intentional, heartfelt conversations and connections.
In an effort to soak up all this beautiful season has to offer, I’ve come up with a few ideas on how we can all push ourselves to intentionally connect whether it be for business or in our personal lives.
Try to make plans to attend an event that you normally wouldn’t go to and requires you to step out of your comfort zone. That just may end up being the event where you make an amazing connection. Let’s attempt to listen and feel those subtle nudges from God. You know the nudges that quietly drew your attention to an event to begin with or towards a certain person? Personally, in the past I’ve chosen to ignore those quiet nudges because self-doubt and worries of being uncomfortable or unlikeable have crept in. It’s so important to remember that others are feeling the exact same way!
Intentionally preparing ourselves for a new event and taking a moment to come up with questions that are appropriate to the situation could make all the difference in having meaningful conversations. Asking yourself how you can you relate to the cause, or the theme? Our personal experiences can be the best conversation starters. Opening up about ourselves and being vulnerable makes a conversation more meaningful. Also, finding out about how others like to spend their summers? What are their favorite summer activities? Do they go anywhere special for vacation? Are they outdoorsy or do they prefer to stay indoors?
After putting ourselves out there and hopefully making at least one meaningful connection, can we push ourselves even further by promising to follow up and reach out to our new acquaintance? Maybe suggest meeting up for something a little more meaningful than the average coffee or lunch meeting. Wouldn’t it be fun to take advantage of the season and meet up with your new potential friend for a wine tasting, outdoor walk while you sip on coffee, extending an invite to a meeting for an organization you are involved with (Creative Souls Tribe for instance…wink wink!), or a volunteer opportunity?
After getting to know our new acquaintance, or hopefully by now friend, can we take it a step further to intentionally connect? Can we move even further from our comfort zone? What would it hurt to follow up within a month or so and invite them and their significant other over for dinner at your home, or out to a local play or music event? Isn’t that what people used to do before social media, and technology taking over our lives and making us feel more disconnected than ever? I think a lot of us are desperate to make these intentional connections and don’t know how to start. We may just have to be the one to step out of the box first. So can we make a promise to all open our hearts, push outside of our comfort zones, and take advantage of these summer days? Here’s to making new friends and summer memories!
Heather Campbell is a book worm who loves to read, cook, plan any and everything, and connect meaningfully with others! Making people feel good makes me the happiest person in the world! Whether it be through my food or me being of service to others, I’m always searching for ways to better myself and others in the community. I live in Clarksville, Tennessee with my husband and two fur babies, Chance & Flip! You can connect with me on Instagram: @books.and.veggies or reach out and say hello. My Email is firstname.lastname@example.org