DAY 1 – Connection
DAY 1 – CONNECTION
Vulnerability is the essence of connection and connection is the essence of existence. – Leo Christopher
Human beings crave connection. What is a life if we are not to feel part of the greater whole? When we sense a piece of ourselves in another, we find home. However, if you take a look around it is beginning to seem like we may be finding ourselves more and more disconnected from those around us. It’s easy to understand in the Information Age, with so many options at our fingertips for distraction why we may feel this way. But this can mean grave suffering in the long term if we continue down this road to distraction-ville. If authentic relationships cease to flourish, if we don’t make time and space for connecting on a soul level with our loved ones, we suffer.
Quantum physics shows us that at the quantum level we are all connected. What I do effects you, and you, me. The way to understand this on an experiential level is through our relationships. Not only our relationships with others, but that with ourselves and with divine source, God, or whatever you call the all that is love energy.
GIVING CONNECTION A COLOR
I associate this basic of basic needs with the color red, as that is the color of our base chakra and signifies security, roots, and grounding. Our ability to love and be loved drives us.
Authentic connection begins and ends at home, where we begin our day and where we end it with those we love. In our home we need to be able to put down the gadget, and relate with one another distraction-free. The more we connect with our phones and ipads, the less present we are with those around us. But it doesn’t have to be this way.
Cultivating Connection in Our Home
One way we can consistently remind ourselves of the need to reconnect on a regular basis with our loved ones is by dedicating an area of our home for this purpose. Once we create a space solely for nourishing relationships, every time we are in that area we will subconsciously be reminding ourselves of this intention. Designing our space with reminders and images that literally surround us of this keep this idea fresh in our awareness. We are cultivating habits and behaviors, one room at a time.
So What Area Best Serves Authentic Connection?
When we think about where we have most of our daily authentic connection, the most obvious spaces would be where we share a meal every day with our loved ones. But we also need a living space set up entirely for conversation, most would consider this to be the living room. But friends, we want to actually USE our living room. We are not talking about a stale, unused space that remains untouched for months on end. We want to create an inviting, comfortable, even sensuous atmosphere. This does not mean we only connect in these rooms. We are always connecting and engaging with each other on some level throughout the day in our living space, but there are definitely areas where its more likely to take place.
EVALUATE OUR CURRENT SITUATION
Our first step is to assess the current situation in our life and in our space. How connected to we feel on a regular basis to those around us and is our space set up for success?
Just take a look at your day. Do you sit down to dinner with family or friends and share real, present conversation? Do you bring your phone to the table with you? Do you have an area solely for family dinners? If you live and eat meals alone, are you mindful of your eating?
When it comes to relationships, do you have an inviting, calm and comfortable space where you can just sit with someone and have an authentic conversation? Where there are no distractions to keep you focused? These are all items we want to consider when working on our evaluation.
Whatever feels right works. Any action you take to improve the quality of your relationships is a positive one and there are no rules. The only rule is that you dedicate some space in your home where this can happen. The intent is the most important part in creating an intentional home.
AFFIRMATION >>We also need to come up with an affirmation for this area as well to retrain our brain to connect this way. It could be something like: My connections are authentic and reciprocal. I feel alive and present in my interactions with my family and friends. We truly enjoy each others’ company. We connect on a soul level.
TOOLS >> Are we in need of anything to improve these experiences? For example, my daughter and I admittedly are not up to par in this aspect as she eats at the bar, and I eat at a table on the couch. We live in a small condo and the way it’s set up it makes the most sense NOT to have a dining table. This is one area I intend to put some heart into in #my365 this year.
We need to come up with some personal and space goals. For example, my intention is to create a space where my daughter and I can eat together without distraction. Or for a personal goal, you could say, “by the end of the year I intend to have cultivated loving, honest relationships with X, Y, or Z.”
As far as daily/weekly/monthly routines, it will be something like “I intend to invite one friend over each month for dinner..or every week I will connect with a friend I have lost touch with or one who I enjoy spending time with. Or every day I will spend ten minutes alone reading my favorite book.” We want to cultivate our relationships from all angles so we feel a part of something greater. By nature, we want to feel seen, heard and valued and this is how we can encourage growth in this area of our life.
VISUALIZING AND VISUALIZING SOME MORE
Once we’ve completed this assessment, we can visualize what the experience will look like using a mindmap. If you haven’t used a mind map, it’s an excellent way to put our visions on paper and, out into reality. You write your vision in the present tense, beginning with ” I am…” and then describing what you are doing as specifically as possible. What would your dream life look like if you could design it? What would your relationships look and feel like at home? What would you be doing?
We all have a need and want to connect in this increasingly disconnected world. We need to get out from our screens and back into our families and communities.
TAKING CONSISTENT ACTION
And then finally after we have completed our vision and assessment, we will focus on connection and relationships. I gave connection the day Monday as we want to start off our week grounded and in our hearts. We are grounding our vision in our environment through intention and goal setting, and then we are deliberately taking action in a methodical way. We can do this by working on the physical environment (as simple as buying a table) or by taking a physical action relating to connection. This could be as simple as inviting a friend over or making a phone call to something more courageous like having a necessary but tough conversation. It can be whatever you make it. If some things seem too scary or overwhelming, start small.
DAY ONE ACTION #MY365
What I did was complete the assessment sheet as best I could. We can work on our vision and goals as time goes by, but we need to get some kind of vision down in writing to start. I also noticed, and oddly enough not on purpose, that my daughter and I ended up reading her book in my living space dedicated to connection. Normally we read in bed, but we actually sat on the couch, got cozy and spent time in an area we normally don’t spend too much time in. It was great! We want all the space in our home to be used and loved.
And that’s it folks. This is what we are going to do every day in various spaces in our home. It may sound a little OCD, but it really does shift our thinking and awareness from that of just letting our time go by, to being present and mindful in our moments.
In love and light and a good book,