My 100 Chat, Walk and Connects

JT - Be brave enough to start a conversation that matters. Margaret Wheatley

I remember it like yesterday, sitting in meditation and the 3 words – Chat, Walk and Connect coming through.

Back then, they were just 3 words, today they are so much more as I just completed my 100th Chat, Walk and Connect. Besides the people who have been involved, very few people knew the little project I had taken on. However today, I am ready to share more.

What is 100 Chat, Walk and Connects?

Basically it is a little project that I made up after the 3 words – Chat, Walk and Connect came through a meditation to me in early September 2023. What I did was Chat, Walk and Connect with 100 people individually from September 3, 2023 to December 13, 2023.

How Did I Do the 100 Chat, Walk and Connects?

To get it started, I reached out to people in my circle that I hadn’t spoken to in a while through text messages and social media.

The majority of conversations and walks took place over the phone, however a few of them were in person. Quite a number of people chatted and walked with me, however there were a few people who were not able to chat and walk at the same time or just preferred to sit and chat whilst I walked. I walked for each of the 100 conversations.

At the end of the conversation I took a photo or the person I chatted and walked with, sent me a photo that they wanted in the collage and I added it. Now today I am happy to release the collage of the 100 Chat, Walk and Connects as you can see below.

Why Did I Complete 100 Chat, Walk and Connects?

There were many reasons, however I will share 3. They are –

  1. I prefer deep conversations with people,
  2. Relationships and connections are important to me, and
  3. I know what it is like to feel lonely and how it impacts health and wellbeing.

So let’s me explain each of these 3 in a little more detail.

1. I Prefer Deep Conversations with People

At heart, I am an introvert. Yes I can be in a room and speak to a variety of people, however I much prefer to be in deep conversation with 1 or 2 people. Although I understand it, I am not really in to small talk. My energy is refuelled by being by myself, being in nature or just chilling with those closest to me.

2. Relationships and Connections are Important to Me

When I was working in a National Mental Health and Wellbeing initiative, I came across the book – the 5 Regrets of the Dying by Bronnie Ware.

In the book, Bronnie wrote about the top five regrets of the people she had worked with as a palliative care nurse and were in the last 12 weeks of their lives. You can read more on the website Inspirations and Chai. One of the regrets of the people she worked with was –

“I wish I had stayed in touch with my friends”

Bronnie Ware – The 5 Regrets of the Dying.

Yes, the book was an inspiration to me, however it was more a reminder for me to keep focusing on what I could do to build relationships and support others (as I was already doing a few things – i.e. sending cards and letters on people’s birthdays).

3. I Know What it is like to Feel Lonely…

As a young person, I was quite driven in my chosen sport of tennis (you can see more here). Life most things, being a professional athlete has its ups and downs (and everything in between). One thing I missed was the connection with family, friends and colleagues. When I was playing tennis, I would miss my family and friends and then when I was home I would miss the connection with my friends on tour. So yes there were many times I felt lonely.

Yes, this impacted my overall health and wellbeing. However, back then there was not as much research as there is today. And the level of awareness of mental, emotional, physical and wholistic health and wellbeing was definitely not what it is today (thank fully).

I also know (after life experiences, working, researching and with many people across the lifespan in space of education and mental health and wellbeing) that connectedness with others is one of the most important protective factors for mental health and wellbeing. So, the Chat, Walk and Connects aligned very nicely with my own values and purpose.

What Are My Learnings / Rememberings / Surprises from the 100 Chat, Walks and Connects?

There were so many and I will share more when I am ready and really sit down to reflect on what I have just completed. Today, I just wanted to share the picture as quite a few people wanted to see it who have been on this adventure with me.

Sincere Gratitude…

I could not have completed the 100 Chat, Walk and Connects if I didn’t have the beautiful people in my world who agreed to be on this adventure with me. Thank you so much for responding to my message to be involved in this activity. I am sincerely grateful and it has truly changed my life, so thank you.

And in case you wondered, YES I am going to keep going with the Chat, Walk and Connects. I cannot wait to keep on chatting, learning and supporting others on this adventure of life.

“When we’re brave enough to risk a conversation, we have the chance to rediscover what it means to be human. In conversation, we practice good human behaviors. We think, we laugh, we cry, we tell stories of our day. We become visible to one another. We gain insights and new understandings.”

~ Margaret Wheatley

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