Episode #158 People Aren't Interruptions

It is tempting to believe the lie that busyness is best and our to-do list is paramount. This week, Dr. Michael Brown and automotive executive Dan Costello remind us what matters most and inspire us to turn our attention to others.

Show Notes

I need to make sure that my kids feel like they’re not a burden to me, but they’re a delight to me. I want to be with them.
Dan Costello

Eight Problems

  • Even if we know within our heart of hearts that human connection is the most important thing, we often struggle to live as if that were true.
  • We are not as effective at faking interest in others as we would like to believe.
  • When we treat people like interruptions, they tend to feel like interruptions.
  • There are few more devastating words that can be spoken about a loved one than, “They were always busy.”
  • We often spend the first 60 years of life minimizing our health and marginalizing our relationships in an effort to make money, and then we spend the remaining years depleting our money in an attempt to regain our health and relationships.
  • People have the tendency to be broken, messy, and even occasionally annoying.
  • Engaging with another person typically requires more energy than running an errand.
  • It is difficult to know exactly how long an interruption might last.

Eight Principles

  • Every space we share with another human being is a sacred space.
  • Every person has equal and immeasurable value.
  • At the end of our lives, we will not be thinking about our work nor our accomplishments; we will be thinking about people.
  • There is nothing that we can achieve in our short lives that lasts longer or makes a greater difference than human connection.
  • The greatest gift we can ever give is to be fully present in the presence of others.
  • Every single one of our best friends were once strangers.
  • We can flip the script and choose to believe this paradigm: People are actually the priority, and everything else is an interruption.
  • Presence is the primary goal, and any encouragement or mentoring or influence that takes place is merely a bonus.

Three Practices

  • Whenever you enter a space where human interaction is likely to interfere with your to-do list, pause and remind yourself, “People aren’t interruptions.”
  • Consider the question, “What am I willing to sacrifice today in order to strengthen my most important relationships?”
  • Smile widely and look intentionally into the eyes of others in order to present yourself as someone who is available and inviting.