It should not be underestimated how important it really is to connect with people. People can talk all they want, be listened to if they have a good listener, but is there a real connection?
Connections of persons are two-way. If you are communicating one-way by talking and, perhaps, having somebody that listens, you are having a monologue. This is not a connection, because you are pushing information towards one or more other persons and are not receiving any feedback.
A real connection is when two or more persons interact with each other, try to understand each other, show interest in the message they exchange with each other and actually develop their relations as they go.
For example, a talk about the weather is nice. We all do sometimes; either we complain about rain or enjoy the sunshine, are happy or unhappy about snow or just like to see the hail while being comfortably inside a building. However, a talk about the weather does not develop relations between persons.
What I mean is when two or more persons try to understand each other, the communication is on a whole different level. It starts off by adapting a message to the person that receives it and if the other does not fully understand it, he or she will ask to clarify it and may or may not communicate back.
Depending on the level of communication, an interpersonal connection adds value to the relations between persons. People who do not connect never really commit to others. I will not say they never keep their promises, but they definitely occasionally have trouble taking the feelings and thoughts of others into account. On the other hand, people who are, as it is said, ‘well-connected’ are those who show sincere interest in others. Who communicate both ways, talk, listen, clarify, empathise, sympathise and don’t forget that they are a partner in a process and are not in it alone.
A trained person will really notice the difference between people who, perhaps even the most popular people, don’t really connect, and those who connect well. I’m not sure about how many people I would say are ‘well-connected’ and how many are not, though I meet people from both sides.
On a personal note, I like to connect with people myself. As soon as there is a good conversation, the conversation starts to become really engaging. It doesn’t matter how much one or the other speaks, as long as they listen to each other and try to understand each other. This is also when I really start to see what kind of person I am dealing with. A person who connects well usually isn’t afraid to show his or her genuine personality and that makes it a lot more convenient to get to know the person as the person really is.