Yack, yack, yack!

Ginger on the phone 1971
Ginger loved people and she especially loved to TALK to people . On the phone (the old fashioned kind, seen above in 1971, connected to the wall) for hours to her friends and relatives, to salespeople in stores, to waiters and waitresses in restaurants, to the painter, to the electrician, to the hotel maid, to MY friends. She liked to ask lots of questions to get to know them, and would freely share her personal life stories – and mine – if asked. Being somewhat of a private person, even more so in my younger years, it was not something I appreciated. My circle of friends was small, I was a bit of a loner, and never one for small talk. To this day I don’t spend much time on the phone…..

As years have gone by, I remember one perspective my mother had that I value more today: it’s a lonely life without friends; we all need people. How true. As life presents us with good things, don’t we want sincere friends to share our celebrations? And when we face tough times, people that will be there to support us and know we aren’t alone. Of course we all want that, but we must take the risk to open up, be vulnerable, take an interest in others. Sometimes you have to be the one to take the first step, inviting someone out for dinner or coffee……and regardless of your age, it’s never too old to make new friends. I now make a conscious effort to do this and it is life enriching. In my day to day work in healthcare, often with elders, loneliness is a frequently verbalized problem. Connecting with people is a vital part of overall happiness and a sense of purpose.

On a final note, why is it that we feel an instant connection to some people and not others? Back in the mid-eighties I heard a motivational speaker that left a great impression on me – Loretta Malandro. For many years I carried her card in my wallet imprinted with her words of wisdom that have been an inspiration to me regarding both career and friendships to this day…

– People like people who like them.
– People like people who are like them.
– People like people who like people.

Interesting, huh?

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