I’ve been throwing a lot of hearts lately.

I bet you’re wondering what I mean. Well, it doesn’t have to do with actual fleshy bleeding hearts. That’s way too literal, messy, and illegal in most states. It’s a gesture with two hands that relays a connection with a thought, a shared idea, or a feeling (feels). “Throwing hearts” conveys so much more than words.

Why throw hearts?

It helps you connect in an authentic way to another person. We are emotional beings. No matter how hard we try to deny it our brains are wired to respond to emotion. (Shout out to neuroscience.) The act of throwing someone a heart is a physical representation of an emotional reach out. You are connecting with them on the deepest level without violating any laws of personal space or boundary.

Throwing hearts can mean a variety of things and they are all good. I throw hearts when I haven’t seen someone in a while. It’s usually when we are both running past each other down the hall in opposite directions. If I can’t stop and say hello and I want them to know that I miss them then I’ll throw them a heart and a smile. This may not even be a “friend” on the outside but a colleague that I appreciate and miss working with.

I also throw hearts when I am connecting deeply with someone’s idea or when someone has experienced something that needs some “love”. In fact, I was just in a meeting with a consultant and she was describing her strategic plan for integrating youth into the workforce. Her ideas were so passionate and succinct that I threw her a heart. She laughed and threw one back. She understood that I was expressing my appreciation for her thoughtful passion and it created a connection between us.

I throw hearts when someone has done me a solid (a favor). It’s to show my appreciation of what they have done and how much it means to me.

The great thing about throwing hearts is that there aren’t any words to get wrong. It’s a nonverbal act that cannot be misinterpreted.

“One word of warning about “throwing hearts”…it needs to be authentic. You need to mean it.”

“Throwing hearts” is about connection. It’s about creating an environment where we rejoice in each other and give each other, as colleagues and human beings, acknowledgement and validation that we are worthy of the most positive of emotions.

Throw a heart at someone at work today.

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One thought on “Throwing Hearts…How to Connect with “Feels”. (Part of Creating a Culture)

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