News

Building Connections

  • by Maria Lopez
  • October 21, 2022

Connection is the core of wellbeing. There is evidence that social isolation is even more detrimental to our long term health than alcohol and smoking.

The need for human connection: the need for nurturing and fulfilling relationships is in our core as human beings.

Technology and social media give us the opportunity to connect more than before, however the relationships are more superficial and easy to disconnect. (This is called by researchers: Relational Disposability)

Deep and genuine connections sustain our relationships, they enrich our lives and our wellbeing and contribute to our resilience.

So, how volunteers build connection and become an important link between clients, family, carers and community? 

Volunteers give people their time, with generosity and compassion, which is one of the best gift that can be given to a patient in Palliative Care.

To build genuine connections:

  • It involves effort, vulnerability, being genuine, authentic and open minded.
  • Being reciprocated with support to be able to support others.
  • Being honest and trustable.
  • Actively listening and showing interest in what patients are sharing.
  • Being empathetic.

It is also important to take into account, that there are behaviours that can be considered as “connections killers” as Jo Saies, from video link below, mentions:

  • Texting, having phone conversations or checking emails while having a face to face conversation.
  • Being late, double booking or cancelling/postponing appointments with the individual you want to connect with.
  • No replying calls or not acknowledging messages or attempts to make contacts.
  • Talking over the top of others, being judgemental (even if well meaning).
  • Having one sided conversations, constantly changing the conversation back to you.
  • Insisting of being right or that your opinion is more worthy.

If you want to know more about how Volunteers can build deep connections with their patients, families and carers, we recommend watching the video by Jo Saies from The XFactor Collective, in which you can find recommendations that will help you strengthens those relationships.

Click HERE to access video.

 

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