Let’s Rediscover Joy Through Connection

ReConnect Live with Family and Long Time Friends.

Here is one of the very best things you can do for yourself, right now, to enrich your life and bring you joy!!  Think about longtime friends who bring joy into your life, think about the ones who make you smile and laugh so much your sides hurt!!!  Have you spoken to them recently?  If not, ReConnect Live with them, today!!  Whether they are family, friends or friends who act like family: reach out and reach out to them LIVE, in real time, no texting.

I don’t want you to text or write an email, ReConnect via live or in-person: make a phone call, Skype, FaceTime, Zoom, etc.   If you had to leave a message and they don’t call you back right away, don’t take it personally, enjoy the conversations you have with the people who do call you back or that do get in touch with you and expound upon those.

What if you called 5 people in a week, for a 10-minute call?  Put your timer on and say to them “I’m just calling for 10 minutes, tell me what’s going on with you and then I’ll take 2 minutes telling you what’s going on with me.”  The following day move on to the next person on your ReConnect Live list. Imagine how enriched your life will be and how many different, life-enhancing subjects and happenings that you will learn about. Perhaps you’ll acquire a different point of view, perhaps you’ll learn some great insights that changes your perspective on your life, perhaps you learn to take care of something. What will happen is you will rekindle your joyful spirit.

If you’re afraid that you won’t be able to think of something to chat about with someone on the fly, take a couple notes on subjects that you want to discuss with them and have a light discussion, nothing heavy.  It can be something like:  did you read about the latest law going into effect? have you seen the color that was chosen as the color of the year? have you decided on what you’re going to do this summer for vacation? did you see what the Housewives did on their latest episode? Respect their opinions without judgment.  Feelings of judgment are the quickest way to shut down or heat up a conversation.

Keep it light or keep it deep?  That depends on your relationship with the person you are speaking with and where you want to take it (or leave it).  Do you want to deepen your relationship or do you want it to be light and fluffy? By keeping in touch with a variety of different people we can be exposed to different points of view.   You wouldn’t speak to everyone about politics, for example.  You shouldn’t speak to everyone about the new color of the year and perhaps you shouldn’t speak to everyone about where you’re going on vacation this year.

I do suggest that you give a chance to people who might want to know what the new color is even though in the past, you generally spoke with them about their child.  Think outside the box, this will help you expand and deepen in that friendship.  Perhaps get together live/in-person to enjoy a cup of coffee, lunch or perhaps a weekend away.  Discuss things that are on top of your brain or the things that are really weighing heavily on your brain, whatever you do reach out!  Talk to people and if they don’t call you back don’t take it personally just move on but keep them in your heart.

Bring joy to yourself and others, make the call!

I was thinking the other day how lucky I am to have reconnected with former teachers who had a huge impact on my life.  I thought about the difference teachers can make on a person’s trajectory during their early years and how that impact is felt forever.

One of my favorites, Ms. Hagerty, introduced our class to her love of reading through acting out the voices for us as she read The Hobbit every day after lunch.  This practice decluttered our minds and got us ready to absorb the afternoon’s lessons.  It showed us the importance of reading every day, even for only a half hour and how that can transport you to another world. Many classmates have passed the love of reading on to their children through that book.

Ms. Hagerty also took us on field trips where experiential learning took place and made learning fun.  Everyone wanted to sit next to her, just to be in her presence and absorb whatever concept she was relating to us at the time. And, we tried out a new concept, an “Open Classroom” where we had classes on the school’s lawn, under a tree.  Exposure to new ways of teaching allowed us to understand how we best learn as individuals.

One of my classmates, Dina, remembers the Prisoner of War bracelets Ms. Hegarty introduced us to.  Prisoner of War bracelets http://thewall-usa.com/bracelet.asp  were created during the Viet Nam war as a reminder that soldiers were not forgotten.  On each POW/MIA bracelet was the name, rank and loss date of an American soldier. We purchased and wore them keeping an eye out for each soldier’s return to the United States so we could return the bracelet to the POW/MIA soldier so they understood they were never forgotten.  “POW bracelets taught us to be socially conscious, she didn’t treat us like 5th graders, she treated us like people who could make a difference in the world.”

Understanding that we all learn differently, she spoke about her vulnerability when she learns new things and passed on her tips and tricks to help us as unique individuals best learn in our own way.  She was so organized and had such well-planned lessons and outings we never felt confused by what we were going to be doing that day or what we were learning, she showed us how to organize and declutter our minds.

It was a very safe learning environment. What a gift our grammar school gave us by hiring her!  Imagine, a teacher being able to reach 40 unique students in a variety of ways, ways that worked while creating socially conscious people.   I cannot thank her enough!  Why not reach out to your positive former teachers?