I have a 1996 Jeep Grand Cherokee. It’s got almost 250,000 miles on it. It was given to me by my brother who, along with his daughter, enjoy working on cars, so they took great care of it. Before that, the original owner was our father, who also kept it well maintained. I’ve followed in their footsteps and made efforts to take good care of it as well.
So what? The car wouldn’t be here if it hadn’t been cared for all these years.
If you want anything to last, you’re going to have to maintain it.
Social Handles are like that too. Maintenance. Yes, some maintenance can be a bit pricey, but that’s a short term point of view. When you look at it in the long term lens, you see it’s a bargain.
Social handles require maintenance:
To self – Because you are the most important person in your life. Your ability to relate and support others relies on taking care of your first.
To dreams – To get to tomorrow’s version of a desired you.
To others – Because without connection to others, you have no accountability.
By practicing these “4 C’s”you will improve not only the number of friends, (read support or contacts) improve your assertiveness and keep you moving on the road to a purpose of your choice.
The “4 C’s” to the Maintenance of Social Handles
Contact – The act of reaching out to others is an action of belief in self. You know and believe in yourself enough to want to invite others into your circle. Your social funnel requires regular feeding by infusing new people into your group. Never isolate due to fear, reach out, others are waiting for you.
Communicate – Learn how people communicate. 7% is verbal (Words), 38% is vocal (your tone) and 55% is Visual (body Language). Though this can change slightly from person to person, it is upon us to decode their language. Further, we have a degree of responsibility as to how we say things (encoding).
If you think you’re going to get away with, “Well, ya’ just gotta me as I am or screw you.” kinda attitude, you’re the problem. No, I don’t have to take you as you are, if your a jerk. (and though “jerk” can seem like a subjective term, I think we can all agree upon certain behaviors that identify “jerk-ness.)
Connect – Deeply with those who are close to you. Requires you to be open hearted. Yes, you’re going to get hurt somewhere along the way, but it is a part of all relationships to dare to draw near, at the right speed, with the correct boundaries for the right reasons.
Friends are a garden that requires regular touches to keep things growing, fluid and purposeful. This practice keeps you relevant to new people you have met, in touch with people you are getting to know better.
Commit – Commitment is normally something we expect other people to do to us. Our agenda, our will, our goals. What commitment really looks like is to say, “I’m going to do this, and there is nothing that will change my mind.”
Don’t tell me about how they changed, or their not holding up their end of the bargain. Did you say you yourself, and then, therefore, to others, that you were going to do this thing? Tom Petty says it this way:
You have to say it to yourself first. Not others. If you’re going to do this, you are answerable to you. And you alone. Sure, others are fine for accountability partners and they could be affected by your choices, but this is ultimately, 100%, all about you, you YOU!
If you started down a trail that lead to a desired destination, you will tolerate the level of difficulty because you know what awaits you is worth it. Just because it now is getting hard has nothing to do with the goal. You’re just earning it.
I was out running errands recently but when the time came to film my live video for the day, I was at a tire store with my six year old. Undaunted, I had my notes, handed the phone to the six year old and sat down to film. My daughter’s eyes got wide and said, “I don’t want to do this, I dunno how!” Not wanting hold my arms up for 10 or 15 minutes to do a selfie video and seeing this as a teachable moment, I said to her, “Hey, you can watch Daddy on live TV. It’ll be fun!”
She accepted the reframing of the task. Her eyes brightened and she was eager to get going. The video, called “Maintenance” is available on my Facebook page:
Posted by Ivor Chester on Wednesday, May 2, 2018
You can hear her comments, groans, and giggles in the background.
The “4 C’s” in Practice
I communicated with her on a level she could be motivated on, connected with her in a way she could understand, got her to commit and the job got done.
I’ve used this system to overcome the remnants of depression that have kept me from stepping out and meeting people, developing relationships and finding support for years. I encourage you to include it in your daily rituals to overcome your own isolation and social misconceptions.