Do You Feel Invisible?

‘He would walk past me like I didn’t exist. He never acknowledged me, wouldn’t say good morning or how are you?”
And so it began recently with a new potential coaching client as we met for the first time. There was a sense of invisibility, that she didn’t matter, that she wasn’t seen. How many of you have felt the exact same thing at some point in your life? I know I have experienced that at times. Particularly as I have gotten older. Our world acknowledges youth. But it is even more than that. There is a disconnect happening these days. I see more and more of it as I travel. Folks are plugged in to their electronic world with limited person to person contact. If you sit and look around these days in the airport or coffee shops or places where people gather, no one is really talking. Friends are sharing a meal and they are all on their phones, heads down, no eye contact. People wonder why they are struggling with their relationships when there is limited time set aside for true one on one conversation. Brene Brown talks about connection as “the energy you feel when you are seen, heard and valued.” We all long for a true connection. It is imperative for our mental health that we connect with those around us and feel a sense of belonging. As recommended on the Mental Health America website,
1. Make a list of the people you want to contact regularly. If necessary, add a reminder to your calendar.
2. Commit to a certain amount of time together each day or week—without pagers, iPods or other distracting contraptions.
3. Listen really well. Repeat what you heard to make sure you understood.
4. Ask for specific kinds of help. Even the best of friends can’t read your mind.
5. Show how much you respect, support and appreciate your friends and family. You may think positive thoughts, but sharing them works wonders.
6. Move out of relationships that make you feel unsafe, lower your self-esteem or draw you into unhealthy habits, like abusing drugs.
Take steps today towards living your best life. Reach out and ask for help. Offer your gifts. You will become visible to those that care.

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