Monday, July 29, 2019

Week 30: Social Connection

One of the most ill-defined, yet also one of the most fulfilling goals on my list of 60, is goal #10:

Foster strong and deep communication with everyone I meet. Aim to have at least one positive social connection every day and at least one event every week. 

This is one of those goals that's more about having a mindset of being friendly and outgoing.  My natural personality tends towards a left-brained "thinker." I spent my younger years perfectly happy being in libraries or bookstores or hidden away somewhere with my computer. (I even wrote a book about realizing that my closest relationship seemed to be with my computer, "Laptop Guy.")

In that book, I was determined to fall in love (with a man, not a laptop). What I discovered, is that love is so much more than "romantic love." Every single person and relationship I have is an opportunity to both give and receive love.

This year, I have been making an intentional effort to foster every relationship, dig a little deeper, and look for new opportunities to get to know people.. to find what I love about each person I have the honor of having in my life, whether for a day or a lifetime.

Again, this doesn't come naturally, but there are some things I've been doing during my '60-until-60 project' that are helping me foster deeper connections:

One-on-One Celebrations

Instead of (or maybe in addition to!) a big 60th birthday party, I have wanted to have 60 one-on-one celebrations with friends and family.  I like to find out about the passions of my fellow partier and hopefully find a way to celebrate that passion.  Then I find out a song they particularly like and create a 30-second slide show with a clip of the song playing in the background.

This week I had three of these celebrations: One with my grandson, Diego, who turned 10 this week, one with my friend, Isaac, and one with my friend, Sandy.   Below are just single representative pictures, but full slideshow with music will be in place in time for my 60th birthday! 

I just love when people talk about something they're passionate about and teach me about it. I learn something new--often something I'd never even known existed--and I see the excitement in their eyes and voices as they tell me more.

Diego and I went video game shopping and had his favorite lunch (Hawaiian Pizza) at the mall.

Isaac combined his passion for photography with his interest in insects to take very unique macro shots of bugs!

Sandy taught me how to defend myself using Krav Maga

AirBnB Hosting

A very unexpected benefit of becoming an AirBnB Hostess is that I really enjoy meeting all the guests and finding out more about them. This week I was honored that one of my first AirBnB guests, Christina, created a "Watch Party" highlighting her stay in Boulder and featured a short interview with me!

Saying 'Yes' to Invitations

Since I was doing so much traveling in the last few years, I had to miss a lot of local events and parties. I'm taking full advantage of saying 'yes' these days! Last weekend, one of my friends, Sonja, hosted a 7am gorgeous breakfast on her patio, complete with flowers everywhere. I'm an early riser, so 7am didn't bother me at all, and what a special experience! Five-star beauty in all ways!

Sonja's Garden Party Breakfast


Some of the best new friends I've made have been from Meetups. Here's a picture of me with my new friend, Rebecca, who I met at a Bowling Meetup. She was visiting Boulder and has a home in Sarasota! Since Sarasota is one of my snowbird locations, I'm excited that I already have a friend I'll be able to stay with when I'm out there!

New Sarasota friend, Rebecca!

Introductions from others

Another new friend I've made is Mary, the mother of someone I worked with in Omaha. When Amy texted me and asked if I'd want to meet up with her mother, little did I know we'd become fast friends! She was even my walking buddy for this year's Bolder Boulder!

This week, Mary's sister, Katie was visiting and the three of us got together both Saturday and Sunday nights for fun conversation, cocktails, and dancing! So my friendship with Amy led to a friendship with her mother, Mary, and now Katie, as well!

Me, Katie, and Mary at the St. Julien for fun cocktails!
Celebrating Goofy Holidays

Did you know that there are SO many zany holidays? Every day has multiple special ways to celebrate which really appeals to my inner child!  And what better way to celebrate a special day than with a friend?

Celebrating National Ice Cream Day with Michael!
I've been pretty nervous about being lonely in retirement since I'm single, my kids are all grown up and independent, and most of my friends are busy with jobs or with their own families. But I'm learning how fun and easy it is to make new friends and to really enjoy spending time with all the people in my life!


Anonymous said...

I didn’t recognize my big fat face getting stuffed with a Ben and Jerry’s ice cream bar until I read the caption....not 100% sure a TY..TYVM is in order...but the ice cream was outstanding!

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Michele Hebrank said...

You're doing such a great job of 'connecting' with people in so many different ways! Good job!