We all know how important love is. When we feel love, it is healthy for our body and healing for our emotions. So we have been fascinated by research from Dr. Barbara Fredrickson. She finds that the skill of connection with others is a prime part of feeling love.

That is, when we fall in love, we feel deeply connected. But what we don’t recognize is that some people are better generally at connecting than others are. If you were to develop your skills at connection, you will be able to connect with others better, and make them feel loved by you!

Fredrickson and her student, Bethany Kok, developed a simple homework
assignment. If you will do this for a few weeks, you will find that you are connecting better with everyone, simply by paying attention to one thing.

Isn’t that a great concept? You don’t have to practice anything, you simply notice one thing, and you automatically get better and better.

Here is their assignment: Jot down the names of three people you spent some time with yesterday.

Now reflect on closeness. Rate yourself on a 1 – 7 scale in terms of connection and being “in tune.” One means no connection, not in tune at all. Seven means you were completely in tune.

“During that time I felt “in tune” with the person (or, persons) I was with.” Rate yourself from 1 – 7.

“During that time, I felt close to the person (or, persons) I was with.” Again, rate yourself.

Now jot down any other thoughts about why you felt close, or why you felt “in tune” with people.

Simply by noticing when you are in tune, or in sync with others helps you to feel more in tune. Noticing when you feel close helps you learn to feel more close. Try this for a few weeks. You will likely find yourself feeling happier and closer to others.

Copyright © 2013 by Lynn D. Johnson, Ph.D.