Subject: Making the connection
Celebrating The Journey!
produced by Margo Chisholm
Monday, October 11, 1999
Welcome to the Premier Issue of Celebrating The Journey. My
purpose in publishing this newsletter is to provide you with a
weekly resource to support you in celebrating your own journey
to the top. I deliver it with my wish for you to have success,
freedom and joy in all areas of your life. Enjoy!
As the pace of our world continues to increase, one of the ways
we can stay grounded is through people: people we connect with,
people we can share with, people we love, people we know and
who know us. These connections can begin any time we meet
When were you last at a gathering where people didn’t know
each other well? Did much of the conversation center around
“What do you do for a living?” or “Where do you live?” or
“Where did you go to school?” or “How ‘bout them Broncos?”
(Well, that last one may be pushing it this season!) These are
questions you ask when you don’t know what to say to someone,
when you need to fill up a silence with small talk. The questions
do fill up the silence, and they do nothing to bring the two
people in conversation closer together. Questions like these
create more distance than they do true communication. They
allow you to think you are communicating when, in actuality,
you’re only bantering words back and forth. Do you genuinely
know someone any better when you find out where they live or
where they grew up or where they went to school or what they
do for a living?
How might it be different if you asked questions like these:
What makes your heart sing?
What brought you to where you live now?
What’s your favorite thing to do with your children?
What are you most proud of about your children?
What makes you laugh out loud?
What makes you cry?
What is the most beautiful place you’ve ever been?
What is your greatest accomplishment?
Some people will think these are nosy questions and be put off
by them, maybe even think you’re rude in asking them. Some
people will be puzzled. They’ll furrow their brow and say, “Gee, I
never thought about that.” And some people will smile, pleased
at your interest, and answer the questions. And you will begin to
really know them, begin to establish a relationship. That’s where
the connection begins.
Are you ready to connect rather than merely converse?
Let go of using small talk to cover up uncomfortable silences.
Don’t ask, “How are you?” unless you really want to know.
When you meet someone new, ask them questions about who
they are rather than what they do.
DISTINCTION: Connection vs. Conversation
Connection happens when people listen to one another; speak
from the heart; don’t need to fill up the silence. Conversation
happens when have a dialogue; exchange words and phrases and
sentences; pass the time of day; fill up a silence. Connection
gives energy; conversation takes energy. We create a connection;
we have a conversation. Connections bond us; conversations are
It doesn’t interest me what you do for a living.
I want to know what you ache for,
and if you dare to dream of meeting your heart’s longing.
It doesn’t interest me how old you are.
I want to know if you will risk looking like a fool for love,
for your dreams,
for the adventure of being alive.
It doesn’t interest me what planets are squaring your moon
I want to know if you have touched the center of your own
If you have been opened by life’s betrayals
or have become shriveled and closed from fear of further pain.
I want to know if you can sit with pain, mine or your own,
without moving to hide it, or fade it, or fix it.
I want to know if you can dance with wildness and let the ecstasy
to the tips of your fingers and toes without cautioning us to be
be realistic, or to remember the limitations of being human.
It doesn’t interest me if the story you’re telling me is true.
I want to know if you can disappoint another to be true to
if you can bear the accusation of betrayal and not betray your
I want to know if you can be faithful and therefore be
I want to know if you can see beauty even when it is not pretty
and if you can source your life from its own presence.
I want to know if you can live with failure, yours and mine,
and still stand on the shore of a lake and shout to the silver of a
full moon, “YES!”
It doesn’t interest me to know where you live or how much
money you have.
I want to know if you can get up after a night of grief and despair
and do what needs to be done for the children.
It doesn’t interest me who you know or how you came to be
I want to know if you will stand in the center of the fire with me
and not shrink back.
It doesn’t interest me where or what or with whom you have
I want to know what sustains you from the inside when all else
I want to know if you can be alone with yourself, and if you truly
like the company you keep in the empty moments.
Oriah Mountain Dreamer, Native Elder
Give yourself the gift of connection this week.
YOU’RE NOT LAZY!
There is space available in the October 31 workshop
BREAKING THE EXERCISE BARRIER
How many times have you vowed to start a new exercise plan
that lasted 3 days? Joined a gym and gone twice? Vowed to get fit
and ended up sitting on your couch? Berated yourself for being
“lazy”? You know exercise is in your best interest, so why don’t
you do it? Healthy exercise isn’t only about discipline and will
power. It’s about history and beliefs and motivation. This
workshop is for those who want to examine and change your old
beliefs about exercise and create and implement new ones that
will allow exercise to be an effortless and healthy part of your
When: Saturday, October 31, 9 am – 4 pm
Where: 37 Dakota Meadows Dr., Carbondale, CO
This workshop is also available in a 4-week teleclass format by
request. Same information and group discussion, with writing
assignments done between calls rather than during the
workshop. The cost is $95. Gather your friends and acquaintances
who struggle with consistent, healthy exercise and contact me at
mailto:email@example.com. Minimum 4 people,
Copyright © 1999, all rights reserved, by Margo Chisholm
I invite you to share Celebrating the Journey with your Mailing
List, Friends, and Associates. We ask only that the entire email
with Copyright and Credits be included. The author of this
article is Margo Chisholm. You may contact her at (970)704-9336
or at mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org.
My purpose in publishing Celebrating the Journey is to provide
you with resources, motivation, inspiration and energy for
YOUR journey to creating success, freedom and joy in all areas of
your life. CTJ will use stories from my life and others’, coaching
tips and resources, quotes and humor to deliver a learning experience
that can enhance your life. I am always looking for
comments, ideas and ways to improve CTJ. I welcome your
emails at mailto:email@example.com.
To receive your own free copy of Celebrating the Journey,
send an email to
and in the body of the text include
subscribe tothesummit-list youremailaddress
or to stop receiving it include
unsubscribe tothesummit-list youremailaddress
Margo Chisholm is available for individual and group coaching.
Every dedicated athlete has a coach. Why not have a coach for
the most important game of all: the game of life. Visit our website
at https://www.tothesummit.com for additional resources and
tools. To schedule a consultation, send an email to
“At every moment of our life we have an
opportunity to choose joy.”
Henri J. M. Nouwen
Coach, Speaker, Author, Therapist
Partnering you in having success,
freedom and joy in all areas of your life
970-704-9336 fax 970-704-9346
Celebrating The Journey is a free, weekly
email newsletter, full of resources and
quotes, humor and coaching to support you
in having the life you REALLY want. Visit
https://www.tothesummit.com to subscribe.