Beverly Landais logo
Beverly Landais logo

Social beat solo when dealing with life's challenges

8th June 2019 | Beverly Landais

Being noticed lifts your spirits and brighten your day. Worn down by the demands of life and the constant whirl of things to do, the simple things count. A smile exchanged with someone as you pass each other by in the street. It is maybe dropping a welcome card around to a new neighbour and perhaps allowing someone to step ahead of you at the queue. These are small but significant shared moments that ground you in the here and now. That connects you and build a sense of community.  

Sometimes the opportunity passes by. Often this is because of shyness or embarrassment. Then the vicious circle of awkwardness kicks in. Perhaps you worry about how you will come across. Maybe you want the occasion to be ‘perfect’. This instinct can unleash your inner critic and encourages unhelpful self-editing. Often this is accompanied by an internal dialogue that says, ‘don’t bother; it’s better not to risk rejection.’

Before you know it, the chance is lost to make a new connection. It is only human to want to say and do the right thing. Nobody wants to look foolish, so sometimes you do nothing or, worst, make a smart comment at another's expense. So, how do you break the vicious circle of awkwardness? Back to the simple things: 

Be curious and non-judgmental about others. Banish your inner critic by focusing on the other person and demonstrate a genuine interest in them. This technique trains your brain to be more open and accepting of others. It will also help create a relaxed frame of mind so you can enjoy the experience.

Build rapport more rapidly by focusing on the other person’s interests. Witty words and dramatic gestures do not outweigh being attentive to the concerns and interests of others. The best conversationalists are those who listen fully and not jump in with a ‘better’ story.

Start with a simple acknowledgement. All it takes is a pleasant greeting or just a ‘thank you’ for a service rendered or a job well done. Try to remember someone's name. Think about the words of Dale Carnegie, the famous writer and trainer who created courses to help with interpersonal skills: “A person’s name is to that person the sweetest and most important sound in any language.”

Banish multi-tasking when building personal connections. Don’t sabotage your efforts to develop relationships by multi-tasking in the other person’s presence. Show respect by giving them your whole attention. Put down your book or smartphone and look away from the television when you someone is talking to you. There's no better way to express that you value another person. So, make eye contact and fully listen when someone speaks; it will make all the difference.

Sincere appreciation is always welcome. It is a gift to feel connected and share an experience of mutual discovery. Try for yourself: acknowledge and smile, take the time to listen and be fascinated by the issues and interests of another.

You are now on your way to creating a virtuous circle of connection in business and life. The small things we say and do can make all the difference when seeking to make connections with others. 



8th June 2019 | Beverly Landais

« Back to the Blog

"Throughout our coaching relationship, Beverly’s thoughtful questioning and expertise have enabled me to successfully get to the root cause of real business problems and overcome barriers that were impeding the resolution of these. Her approach has helped me focus on areas where I can have the most impact, breaking down complex change projects into more achievable steps. Working with Beverly has also enabled me to benefit from her vast knowledge of tips and tools for developing better working practices, improving my efficiency and effectiveness "

Jonathan Millar, Associate Director - Saunderson House

"In 2018/2019 I benefited from 7 coaching sessions as part of a bespoke coaching plan for new equity partners created by Beverly. The sessions were designed around the needs of our business and culture but were flexed and adapted to my individual needs. Beverly is a great coach, she has a lovely manner which allowed me to fully relax, enjoy the sessions and open up. She was not afraid to challenge me to achieve my potential and improve. I now feel well placed to help shape the direction of the firm and contribute to its further growth. "

Ed Fowler, Partner - Cripps Pemberton Greenish

"In just 4 sessions, Beverly has guided me firstly towards re-establishing my own foundations on what drives me as an individual. And secondly helped me to recognise my potential at work. I am so grateful to have found her. She has a gift for striking the perfect balance between being supportive yet challenging. I would recommend her to those willing to conquer their own self-limiting beliefs to achieve their goals "

Anish Hindocha, Lead Operational Excellence Consultant - Visa

"What I value about Beverly as a mentor is her honesty and integrity. A fantastic communicator and natural coach she provides a calm reassuring presence which encourages people to excel."

Vince Plant, Chambers Director - Devereux Chambers