I’ve previously shared my favorite movie line, “I see you.” Today, I want to talk about the response to this greeting, “Sikhona,” which means, “I am here” and take a minute to reflect on this statement and say the words out loud.

“I am here.”

These words are a call to action. A state of being. An indication of one’s presence.

But, what do they mean to you? Are you present, focused on living your best life, and connecting with the people around you?

If not, then it’s time. Because being emotionally present, empowered, and listening to the people around you can create greater fulfillment and happiness in your life. People who are self-aware often reach greater levels of performance, have greater influence, are more productive, and have a deeper impact at work and home.

When you’re fluent in recognizing and self-regulating your own emotions and the emotions of others you are able to be more personal. Self-aware. Selfless. Compassionate.

I see this especially in the moments where we are called to be leaders in our communities, homes, and workplace. According to a recent HBR article, when a leader takes the initiative to connect, employees are 32% more motivated, 46% more satisfied with their job, and perform 16% better overall. The article also shared that there is a global movement of progressive organizations like Accenture, Marriott, and LinkedIn whose leaders ask themselves, “How can we create more people-centered cultures where employees and leaders are more fully satisfied and engaged?” Essentially, leaders who focus on developing greater emotional intelligence become more human. Leadership can happen anywhere, at any time. If these kinds of results are being seen in the workplace…can you imagine the impacts applying this level of focus and connection would have at home?

“I am here.”

Becoming more human is actually more simple than we think.

A few years back, I knew a leader who joined a growing information technology company as a member of their senior management team. On about day three, he took his lunch to the small lunch room. When he entered, everyone stopped talking and he quickly realized none of his peers were in the room…only administrative staff. Confused, he asked if the lunchroom was private. The answer was, “No, but senior management does not eat here.”

After two weeks, people were used to him eating in the lunch room. It humanized him and allowed him to learn their perspectives on work, family, and career. And they got to know him as a person as well. People felt free to talk and he was free to listen. He learned how the company really worked and how to get things done with the support of his lunchroom buddies (who worked across the company in departments like finance, HR, IT, business development, and proposal management).

Being more human can happen anywhere, at any moment of your day. With your employees, spouse, children, friends, family, and strangers. Try starting your day with the mantra, “I Am Here.” And then, make sure you are. If you’re not, first acknowledge it and then clear what’s in the way. It’s like when you have an argument with someone in the morning and what they said is just bugging you. If you can clear that feeling right away, then you will be more productive and present for the people around you. It’s not always easy to do, but it should still be the focus.

Because we are all more effective, present, and happy if we can clear issues first and take the time to reshape our day.

Need help or have a question on what it takes to be more connected and present with yourself and the people around you? Reach out. Quest2 is here to help you remember you are a human being!

Originally published at www.quest2connect.com