Connection Takes Five Minutes

We talked about how to reach out to your friends and family. Let's talk about connection. Another form of resistance that often blocks us from reaching out to people we care about is the uncertainty of what to talk about, and the worry that it will take too long (or forever) to actually find a sense of connection.

The reality is that it takes five minutes.

Edward Hallowell, a veteran psychiatrist instructor at Harvard, coined the term "The Human Moment" to describe the invaluable experience of person-to-person connection. He writes that:

"Human moments require energy. Often, that’s what makes them easy to avoid. The human moment may be seen as yet another tax on our overextended lives. But a human moment doesn’t have to be emotionally draining or personally revealing. In fact, the human moment can be brisk, businesslike, and brief. A five-minute conversation can be a perfectly meaningful human moment. To make the human moment work, you have to set aside what you’re doing, put down the memo you were reading, disengage from your laptop, abandon your daydream, and focus on the person you’re with."1

All it takes is five minutes of present attention. If it's a call, maybe that's a short walk outside or moving to your favorite chair. If you're together, perhaps you set aside your phone and any other distractions. You can even set expectations from the outset that you only have a few minutes to connect.

You'll discover that shared presence creates connection. You don't need to worry about where the conversation will take you.

And if knowing that isn't enough, we'll send you daily conversation starting questions for inspiration.