Speeding Toward Slowness

If you've spent any time at all chatting with someone who was born before 1950, you may have detected some melancholy about how things no longer seem to be done with meaning. I get it...our fast-paced world is quickly stripping us of most things 'slow,' which can be translated to 'anything with any depth,' including our relationships. You know, things that take time aren't really 'trending' on Twitter right now. Recently, I was having a post-holiday conversation with my aunt and she was explaining that she was discouraged by her holiday greetings. "My cards used to be my Christmas decorations," she said. "And no one writes messages any more." This is certainly true. I mean, who has the time to write messages any more? Come to think of it, I really can't even remember the last time I received a letter at all.

We've all heard it; those remarks that people make: 'That's too long. No one wants to read that. It needs to be 500 words, or less,' or 'People don't want to dig for your information...' It crops up everywhere, this need for speed.

But let's be realistic. Are all things slow really going away? Although I can see examples of the RPM's revving in every day life, I also see people [including myself] valuing - and validating - products and approaches that crawl in comparison.

Etsy is a fantastic and thriving example of this idea. With a quick click, an avalanche of true artistic [and slow] talent is presented for your relaxed perusal. Turns out that letterpress, tin type photographs and artisan tools are alive and well! Or, how about the 'slow food' movement? Even ORGANIC eating...you know, 'old skool' farming, and 'open flame' cooking [ahem, otherwise known as 'grilling,' puh-leaze] are some of the hottest food movements of our time.

See, I think there are still large parts of our population who prefer a much slower pace, right alongside our wise elders. You want to know what else still moves slow? Relationships [yay! ...finally getting to the point of this post]. I try to explain this to my clients all the time. Even though the connections may come faster through Facebook, LinkedIn, Tinder, Bumble, 'speed' networking and dating events...doesn't mean that an individual's interest, trust and engagement to working with you - or DATING you - is any different than it's always been.

I believe that the same elements that mattered in 1910...a shift of the eyebrow, guarded body language and most importantly, personal actions and follow through...still matter the way they did before computers were invented. Even armed with new acronyms* such as 'LTR' [Long Term Relationship], 'GSOH' [Good Sense Of Humor] and 'FWB' [Friends With Benefits] doesn't mean anyone can land a marriage-worthy 'BF' or 'GF' any faster than they ever could.

So bottom line is, what's the rush? Take your time and develop your relationships with your customers, and certainly your partners. I personally don't believe people should be considered a 'transaction,' and that the time spent on building connections will bring larger returns in the long run, both financially and otherwise.

A hand-written note goes a long way. Remember people's birthdays or special occasions. Make it a priority to authentically connect with them on anniversaries - and [gasp!] consider foregoing the Facebook note to send a text, or call, or...even BETTER...see them. Who says customers aren't loyal anymore? Really, I think it all started when businesses stopped being loyal to their customers...

*BTW, in case you need to brush up on your acronyms, here is a link I came across, but proceed with caution. I really don't consider myself a prude, but...it's fairly clear that I'm just a BWMF [Boring White Married Female].