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I was shopping for a new car on the weekend. I really enjoy car shopping and found it fascinating to watch the different sales tactics used. (Yes – I’m a huge nerd when it comes to human behaviour!)

Some people only spoke to my husband, not to me. Even though it is going to be my car.

Some people ignored us, as if they had judged we wouldn’t be able to buy one of their cars.

Some people were nice and at the same time totally unhelpful (not able to give us car information etc).

Some people just ticked all the boxes, including giving my son a balloon and sunglasses. (Happy kids, happy life!)

Watching this and reflecting on my experience, I’ve come up with a few conclusions that I think, if we all applied them to our own lives, would make us better humans. In the end of the day, it comes down to being considerate of others and looking to add value rather than receive.

With all interactions, go in with the aim of making the other person’s life a little better. If you go into each conversation, even the small chat with your local barista, with the intention of making them smile or laugh or feel better, then you will be a winner. It shouldn’t be about what YOU get but more so, what you give.

Listen, listen and then listen some more. Don’t just listen to the words that the person is saying, but try to understand where it is coming from, what is behind their thought process. Listen to what they are not saying. You can understand so much more when you just LISTEN fully instead of half listen and half contemplate your response.

Don’t just think about what you need but empathise with the person. What are their struggles? What are their challenges? What have they been through to get to where they are now? Don’t compare yourself to them, just empathise with where they might be from and what has shaped them into the person they are today.

Finally – just be kind to everyone. No matter who they are or what they’ve done. You should be kind to everyone because it’s not about them, but about you. When you are kind and thoughtful, you feel better within yourself. Them feeling good is just an added bonus.

 

So there are a few common sense tips on what you can do today to feel more connected and closer to the people around you.

 

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