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Don’t forget to laugh!

A fun experience from Belgium last week.
Departing our hotel room, on the second floor, fully loaded down with all our luggage, we arrived at the lift.
Our unspoken plan was to take the lift to the ground floor reception and checkout.
The visual indicator showed that the lift was on the ground floor “0.”
We both looked at the lift call buttons and independently of each other, we pushed the call buttons.
One button pointed upwards, the other button pointed downwards.
One of us pushed up, the other pushed down.
Quizzically, we looked at one another, thinking “Why did you do that?”
Do you remember the classic book on communication styles, “Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus” by John Gray?
The book highlights the key differences between how men and women think, act, and communicate.
I must admit – that was my first thought as we stood waiting on the lift to arrive.
We turned to one another again and laughed!
It was a silly moment, but one that highlighted the simple differences between our thinking.
Stepping into the lift, we did finally arrive at our destination, after a short detour upwards, to the third floor!
After 28 years of marriage, our conclusion is this…
No two people ever see all things precisely the same!
Understanding and appreciating one another’s differences is the key to healthy relationships.
And don’t forget to laugh – often!! 😅
𝐀𝐫𝐞 𝐲𝐨𝐮 𝐥𝐚𝐮𝐠𝐡𝐢𝐧𝐠 𝐞𝐧𝐨𝐮𝐠𝐡?

Building Rapport

Recently I was asked – “How do you build rapport?”
Rapport – “a relationship characterized by agreement, mutual understanding, or empathy that makes communication possible or easy – a friendly, harmonious relationship.”
I see rapport as being the sense of connection that I may have with someone.
When you have good rapport it’s like being in sync with someone, and are mutually interested in each other. Often you’ll discover that you have similar feelings and emotions too.
It is also about effective communication and building a healthy camaraderie.
Building rapport is all about establishing that connection and the process of creating deeper relationships.

Top Tips

Firstly, start with yourself!
You really need to know and understand your truest self. Who are you, what are your core values, what are your interests and hobbies, how do you go about getting things done? Importantly – do not pretend to be someone you’re not!
Secondly, empathy is key.
What is empathy? It’s understanding how others feel and being compassionate toward them. The key part to empathy is being genuinely curious. Don’t just stand in another person’s shoes, go, and actually take a walk in them!
Thirdly, ask questions.
Some variation of “tell me about yourself” is often a great way to start a conversation. Asking questions can remove uncomfortable small talk and help you get into more meaningful conversations.
Fourthly, listen!
Active listening means giving your full attention to someone who is speaking. If someone feels like you are hearing them, they will likely listen to you in return, which can establish a good relationship and build great rapport.
Fifthly, take time to understand.
When you take the time to really understand someone, you’ll begin to be able to see the world from the other person’s perspective. It helps to find some common ground and create some shared experiences together.
I know that building great rapport will improve your relationships and will make you a better communicator.
What can you do to build rapport?