Santa was about to close-up for the evening at the mall. No kids in line so I asked him if I could take a selfie with him. He said, “Sure.”
After I took the picture, he said, “It’s been a long day. Stay and talk with me.” So I did. We talked about his role in the world and our families.
It was strangely surreal and gratifying, and I’ve thought a lot about it – about why, knowing the circumstances of Santa’s appearance at the mall, I was so struck by my time with him. Here’s what I’ve come to think about that: he had spent all day having brief and superficial conversations. He wanted a deeper human connection, and I was the object of that desire – that touched me and made me feel special. It made me feel drawn to engage.
I’ve referred a lot recently to my belief that social media is distracting us from deeper human connection and my conversation with Santa is a great reminder. In business, in life, people crave deep connection. Remember Dale Carnegie’s timeless How To Win Friends and Influence People?
P.S. I was so engaged in the conversation that I forgot to ask him for anything!