Connecting in a Disconnected World

Today is Friday, so this post is on interpersonal competence.

I was reading a local Denver community newspaper The Cherry Creek News and Central Denver Dispatch the other day, and came across an interesting article entitled How to Connect in a Disconnected World, by Nancy Harris.  Ms. Harris is a psychotherapist and author of Take Two Cookies and Call Me in the Morning, a book on connecting in a disconnected world.

This article caught my eye because the ability to make connections is a critical ingredient of interpersonal competence.  According to Ms. Harris, the recipe for connecting in a disconnected world has 10 ingredients.

  1. Release your fears and conquer your anxieties.
  2. Accept what is.
  3. Forgive.
  4. Slow down, go within!
  5. Have faith in God.
  6. Trust and follow you intuition.
  7. Be grateful.
  8. Nurture yourself.
  9. Give love away.
  10. Discover your spiritual life purpose – your uniqueness.

I like these 10 common sense ingredients.  I particularly like numbers 2, 7, and 10. 

I like number 2 — accept what is – because if you don’t, you can spend a lot of time and frustration trying to change something that is unchangeable.  I once had a girl friend.  Things were fine when we first got together.  As time went on, it seemed as if she were constantly picking on me.  We finally went our separate ways.  When I asked her about this several months after we had broken up, she said, “I liked a lot of things about you when we first met.  I figured that I could change the things I didn’t like after we got together.  I never could change you though”.  Accept what is.  People and situations come with things we like, and things we don’t like.  Interpersonally competent people their decision on whether to stay in a relationship or absent themselves on the whole package.  They accept what is.  They don’t try to change it.

I like number 7 – be grateful — because I think that all of us have a lot for which we can be grateful.  I am grateful for my health, my wife, my extended family, my ability to think and write, the sunny days we usually have in Denver – and things too numerous to mention here.  When I am grateful for what I have, I don’t covet what I don’t have.  I find that this is a good way to make connections with other people.  If I’m grateful for what I have, it’s easier for me to be happy for them and what they have.  Think about your life.  I bet there are a lot of things for which you should be grateful and that you take for granted.  Focus on what’s positive in your life, and you’ll find it easier to make connections with others.

Finally, I like number 10 – discover your uniqueness – because I think it helps you build a sense of self confidence.  And it helps you build on your strengths.  I learned this lesson when I was developing my personal brand.  I spent a lot of time asking people who know me well how they think of me.  I kept hearing very similar things –- down to earth, common sense, able to cut through the bs -– and so I became The Common Sense Guy.  I fought it for a while –- thinking that common sense didn’t have the gravitas that a personal brand for a consultant, coach and speaker should have.  However, once I came to accept that my uniqueness lies in my ability to help people, teams and organizations learn and grow through applied common sense, I became a lot more centered. 

All 10 of Ms. Harris’ connection ingredients make sense.  Think about them.  How do they apply to you?  How can you use them to become more interpersonally competent?

That’s it for today.  Thanks for reading.  Log on to my website for more common sense.  Check out my other blog: for common sense advice on leading people and running a small business.

I’ll see you around the web, and at Alex’s Lemonade Stand.


PS: Speaking of Alex’s Lemonade Stand – my fundraising page is still open.  Please go to to read Alex’s inspiring story and to donate if you can.

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  1. Good Points to remember and follow. Viji

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