It’s pretty amusing to go through my inbox and Facebook feed in the morning. These are the sorts of things vying for my attention:
Remove Bloat Once And For All
7 Steps To Better Sex
11 Reasons You Need a Relationship Detox
5 Keys To Becoming Irresistible
Supercharge Your Day With These 8 Superfoods
… yada yada
Admittedly, I, too, play a part in the entertaining trend of hooking, and getting hooked, by captivating headlines.
Because let’s face it, time is precious and “interesting” works.
But not all the time.
I just attended a conference last week and noticed the times I would meet someone and within minutes forget his or her name. Wtf? Why is it so hard to remember names? Is this a function of age?
My 7 year-old has the most incredible memory, to the point I have to be really, really careful about what I say because he will absolutely hold me to it… 3 months later. But I’m not so sure it’s because he’s a child.
After observing him for a while I think I’ve concluded something fascinating. This kid can win over anyone he meets and he always remembers names. What I think he does differently from most adults is that he is genuinely interested, not interesting. He wants to know about YOU (and if you know anything about gold mining, gem hunting, or Star Wars) and has no desire to share or show off anything about himself.
Contrast this to your experience of meeting other adults. I won’t lie, I’m usually trying to figure out what to say to ensure a good first impression. So then what happens? I’m trying to be interesting and am therefore not completely interested in the other person. Ironically, I’m immediately uninteresting to the other person who’s trying to be interesting to me. I’ve lost them, they’ve lost me, and then… shoot, what did he just say his name was?
I’ve got a lot to learn from my son. Not just because this skill of being genuinely interested versus interesting will keep my focus sharp and my memory impeccable, but because it’s the royal road to authentic relationships.
Now true, dialogue is a give-and-take and a real relationship is mental and emotional reciprocity. BUT, if we make an intention to be primarily interested we develop our curiosity muscle which, according to all masterminds out there, is the key to beautiful life.
So there you have it. Be genuinely interested. Focus not on being interesting. Your recall will be incredible, relationships authentic, and experiences deeply fulfilling.
Amy Eliza Wong is a life coach, writer, and speaker in the Sacramento, CA area committed to helping people figure out what makes them tick so they can finally live with joy and real purpose. Learn more about working with her.