It seems that people have become more and more alienated lately. More often than not, our mode of interaction is transactional, as opposed to empathetic. "Empathetic" and "transactional" are two of the ways that people behave with one-another, and they're quite the opposite.
This time of year, we're told to be more loving. We're encouraged to get into the "holiday spirit." We're supposed to be more giving, more understanding. But what if we don't feel particularly connected to other people? It's hard to be loving when you don't feel much love.
There are a lot of really awful things happening in the world right now. Fear, though an important mechanism for survival, is also something that can stop you from having a real human experience. There ARE good people in this world. You just have to be open to them. As strange as it may sound to you, a professional cuddler specializes in this kind of thing.
As humans we share an innate desire to connect with others. However, not all people seek to connect for the same reasons, or in the same way. Some people choose to connect a little. While some people need to connect a lot.
It's been my experience, on a personal and professional level, that for real connections to happen, we need to move slowly in our process of opening up. I understand Mr. Boomer's frustration with the unending stream of platitudes he was encountering, but I don't think that going to the other extreme is the answer.
Contrary to common understanding, leadership is not principally about setting a clear direction and influencing a team to get moving. Rather, leadership is about creating the spaces where discovery and action can occur. We so often focus on the mechanics of leadership that we neglect the sense of vulnerability and empathy required to make sense of the world and to take appropriate action.
You and your partner get into a spectacular fight. And let us guess... it's his fault. Or hers. Definitely not yours. It's never really our fault. Even if we apologize, we may still think our partner provoked us to act that way. If only he listened better. If only she stayed out of it. As couples therapists we see this often.
If you feel you just don't have that gift of natural connection, don't worry. Great interpersonal skills can be learned. You can become aware of others and engage them more naturally and easily than you think. You first need to get over your belief that you're "just not a people person" and that it's not your responsibility to foster teamwork -- just results.