However we do it, it's the connections we share with family, friends, students, clients and neighbors that give purpose to our lives, help us fulfill our commitments, offer undefined possibilities and, well, make life what it is. There are as many ways to connect as there are individuals. Sometimes we are related by genetics and sometimes by interests. Sometimes we are strangers, but our paths cross and we recognize the moment.
From prehistoric non-verbal communication to today's abbreviated text messaging, language as a means of connection is only part of the whole. Yet it is through words, and with the help of technology, that we have been able to connect as a Spinning® Community. Those of us who post regularly love what we are doing and value the opportunity. Those of you who read our posts, and even more so, those of you who respond to them, continue what we have begun.
We have just learned that we are ‘experiencing technical difficulties’ and that our blog will be temporarily suspended. Though we will all miss this means of communicating, we plan to be back asap.
But, this does not mean that the communications that are possible to each of us will be suspended. To those of you who are able to read this message, I suggest that you take the time to stop to speak to a friend, pick up the phone, shoot off an email or even scrawl a quick note to deliberately keep in touch with someone you may not have talked with for awhile.
I recently read Howard Schultz’s new book Onward. In one brief aside he referred to one of the Starbuck executives and his habit of ending a meeting 15 minutes early then tasking each person present to use that 15 minutes to call a friend or family member with whom they had not connected for too long.
Just this week my 6 year old granddaughter had read a book about a little girl who wrote a letter to her grandmother and closed with the words “write back.” This began a written connection between them. Consequently I received a little, painstakingly written note from my granddaughter. You can be sure I wrote back!
As a Spinning® Instructor and coordinator of our Spinning® department, I maintain an email list (voluntary – only those who want to be a part of this list are on it) and write biweekly reminders in my date book to send out some newsy notes to those on this list. This morning I passed along an article on nutrition for cyclists, reminded the group to pick up the new July and August Spinning® class schedule and urged them to connect with each other to ride or just chat. Within the hour I received the type of reply that makes such efforts worthwhile. The message was simple – thank you for caring and because you did, I am going to go to a local bike sale today and, with luck, will soon have a bike to ride outdoors with others. We never know when a few shared words might make a difference.
In the weeks and months ahead, I urge us all to stay connected. It is a habit that needs practice, just like anything else. I grew up with the motto that “anything worth doing is worth doing well.” May we, in this Spinning® community, do our jobs well and reap the rewards of fitness, health and friendships.
Blog posted by Linda Freeman for www.spinning.com 6-25-2011.