The 3×3 grid for connection, and joy.

Never, Ever Underestimate the importance of having fun.

Randy Pausch

Hello, My Friends

What a week it’s been?
Family, friends, hubby and I took a heritage rail trip by steam train, through one of the amazing engineering feats of our country.
It was a pleasure to catch up with people in a leisurely manner and to enjoy the scenery without having to be distracted by driving.

This trip was a reminder to me that I need to include more pleasurable activities into my calendar.
I tend to be results orientated, and trips like these don’t ‘count’ as a result.
I think there might be an attitude in there that may need adusting.

So along these lines, I want to talk about the pleasure portfolio.
The other day I was talking with someone who shared a tip with me.
This tip was a bit of an eye opener for me, so I want to share the concept with you.

She asked me about how deep and diverse my connections base was.
I answered honestly, to have revealed to me that it could actually be quite shallow.

The idea is to rule up a page into a 3 X 3 grid. 9 squares in all.
Each square is to represent one area of connection you have with other people.

For example, one Square could be church family, another relatives, another the gym, another a hobby group, another a club you volunteer for, another an educational institute you attend, another could be your vocation.
The idea is to fill each of the squares with different connection groups, making them as broad as possible.
Then to write down the names of actual people you have a connection with, people you know by name and have interactions with.

For a lot of us, we may work with say ten people, but we only interact with 2 or 3. The challenge is to widen or broaden your connection base. Get to know more people.
We tend to mix with the same people, rather than stretching ourselves to meeting new people.

Are the people in the grid, of similar age, gender, and financial status as you are?
Do the people you mix the most with carry the same views as you, have similar experiences and stories to you?

It was suggested to be that a narrow base of people can limit our experiences and our ability to relate to more people.
Interesting thoughts.

With this in mind, over the last 6 months I’ve been exposing myself to different types of books, not the sort I would normally read.
Listening to different podcasts, and listening to the self talk that comes up. Very interesting and telling stories have emerged from exposing myself to unfamiliar surroundings.

This got me thinking about the categories of pleasure. As I have mentioned in other blogs, finding pleasure and joy continues to be a challenge for me.
I drew up the 3 x 3 grid, and began to fill in the various forms of things I gain pleasure from, with the intention of finding nine categories I could expand on.
So far I have food. Food as a source of pleasure and joy can be a slippery slope for those of us who like to use food to avoid emotions.

Exercising. Moving the body, whether dancing alone or with others, whether at the gym, going for a walk or jog. Exercise can bring a lot of joy and pleasure.
Reading and Writing.
Outings like the train ride.
Café drinks and lunches.
Creating with my hands, visible things that can be held. Sewing, wood working, that type of thing.
Art work, creating beauty with colour, texture and form.
Alone time with nature at the beach or amongst trees, sitting in the sun.
Working with individuals and groups of people to make lives better.

What other categories would you suggest that I include to create a well balanced pleasure portfolio?
Self care, romantic time, family shared interests, I am interested to hear your suggestions.
Please let me know of more ideas in the comments.

If you were to do two 3 x 3 grids, one for connections and one for pleasure, what would you fill them with?

This is your challenge for this week, fill in two nine square grids with how you currently connect with people and how you currently find ways to enjoy your life.
Feel free to put your ideas in the comments below.

Until next time deepen your people connections and your pleasure, joy portfolio.

Live your best live authentically.
oxoxox Linda.

As a certified Life Coach, I help you to help yourself, so you can create a well lived life your way. 

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