I’d like to tell you that connection always comes easy. That carving out spaces where we can see, understand, and hear each other is simple, straightforward, and smooth.
This would be an outright lie.
The truth is that the process of connecting is often incredibly uncomfortable.
Showing up when we’d rather not.
Telling our stories when it we just want to focus on fixing the people around us.
Choosing to listen even when we’re not completely certain we’re being understood.
Connection isn’t an easy thing to achieve. It doesn’t just happen.
But the reality that connection isn’t a given has an important upside:
We get to have a say in how connection unfolds around us.
We get to decide whether to make choices that fuel open conversation, or shut things down. Whether to create room for more voices, or limit the circle to who (and what) we already know. Whether we say the words I don’t know so we can move towards the unfamiliar, or hold ourselves out as the person who has all the answers.
The discomfort that’s rolled up with connection isn’t necessarily there to make the process more difficult. The discomfort is there to help us stay conscious, curious, and engaged in the journey of creating spaces where our stories can exist together.