Thursday, April 20, 2006

Why are we drawn to some people -- and not others?

To create real relationships, people need to be compassionate. You can seem caring by doing a few simple things:

Smile and look the person in the eye. Warmth and connection start the process.

Touch the person. Even a quick pat on the arm will reassure them and let them know you care.

Ask the person how they’re doing – or at least how they’ve been since you last saw them. Show them you care. Don’t look at papers or into the distance while they're answering.

Nod your head, give encouraging non-verbal cues.

Don’t interrupt. Give them time to finish their thoughts.

Ask follow-up questions. Take the time to answer theirs. It creates an ongoing dialogue that is the essence of relationships.

If someone seems uncomfortable, acknowledge it. Be willing to admit that there is discomfort. It alleviates tension.

Check in with the person. Ask if they understand, have questions or need more information.

Compliment them. Everyone likes to be liked. The best way to show that you appreciate someone is to say something nice about them. In the process, you will make yourself likeable also.

Research has shown that if you spend a mere 15 seconds talking to anyone, it will seem longer to them. And, they will think you care about them. The interesting thing is that by the time you finish, you usually will. Simple acts of compassion go a long way toward humanizing all of us.

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