Its Hard To Break Free Of Our Habits

But it's so important that we keep at it
February 20, 2014 · By Sloane Davidson, Founder and CEO, Hello Neighbor

Something interesting happened last night. I went to an event where I was speaking. After the event ended and after the small talk, I was exhausted and hungry and ready to get home. I was pretty talked out and it had been a long day.

As I was leaving a young woman started a conversation with me. It was innocuous enough, name exchange, where we’re from, where we live in the city…

I left the building and usually when I’m tired I prefer to walk by myself to the subway or wherever I’m headed to get home. Last night I walked for 20 minutes with this woman and we found out we had a lot in common. Her name is my sisters name. She’s from a country I recently visited. We share a passion for social justice. She’s a recent transplant to New York City and something about her being new softened me. I felt like it was ok to chitchat on the way to our respective destinations. We exchanged information and already emailed each other today. I’m excited to have met someone new and look forward to introducing her to some of my friends.

Maybe it’s just me, but more often than not, I find myself reverting to my own habits and patterns. After living here for a few years and the every day hustle I have recently discovered that I’m not as open as I once was to making friends and to having random conversations. I’m not proud of this at all. In fact, even as I’m sharing this I’m displeased that this is my perspective. I am a serial connector! I love having friends from all over the world that I connect with online!

Yet somehow, without my noticing, this has become the case. Last night was a big wake up call. There are a lot of really amazing people in this world and while I’m extremely lucky to be able to count many of them as friends, there is always room for one more. There is room for more people to come in and out of my life.

It’s hard to break free of our patterns, of our circles and of our habits. The hardest part could be that we don’t even realize they exist. The challenge for myself, and that I pose to you, is to try. If we can open us to ourselves and be honest about our blind spots than maybe we’ve won more than half the battle.

And if you see me out, ask to walk with me. I’d like that very much.