In 2006 I began writing “The SUN News,” a weekly email article which quickly gained a readership of thousands around the globe.
As the Executive Director of The Gray Center, a nonprofit organization which benefited people with autism spectrum disorders (ASD), I was passionate about helping people to value and have the necessary skills to interact successfully with individuals with ASD.
Over the years, I have become increasingly convinced that the skills necessary to succeed with people with ASD (or as people diagnosed with ASD) are the same skills necessary to succeed with anyone. We are all social beings, with individual strengths and challenges that co-exist alongside the need to interact effectively with others in order to achieve our goals.
I eventually changed the name of my email article to Social
Incites™, “providing insights which incite personal and interpersonal
growth.” When I started my own business one
year ago, I decided to use the same name to describe my coaching and consulting services. Apparently, I am not alone in my interest in fostering social successl. On our recent survey, 91% of the respondents indicated that they are also interested in social interactions.
I believe that most success in life depends on our ability to use social skills (or “people skills” or “interpersonal skills”) to interact effectively with others. It would be impossible to list all of them here, but these skills include flexibility, compassion, communication, listening, motivation, compromise, understanding, respect, kindness, patience, humility, honesty, gentleness, forgiveness, and the ability to make others feel safe and comfortable around us.
I believe that everyone should have the opportunity to experience social success…along with other successes that result from that. Sometimes people struggle “socially” because of personal challenges (related to a diagnosis, abuse, lack of education and support, etc.), or because of challenges in their relationships with others. I am passionate about using whatever skills and connections I have to help them move forward, to grow personally and interpersonally, so that successes big and small can be attainable for them.
Over the years, I have met people who describe themselves as “The Queen of Social,” or a “Social Guru.” I am neither. I struggle socially at times, either because I lack the skills necessary for a particular interaction, because I choose not to use them, or because the person with whom I am interacting is lacking or not using the necessary skills for our interaction to be successful. Yet I am thankful for the people who have graciously worked to interact with me in spite of my shortcomings, and I am passionate about sharing that same gift with others.
What is it that I can’t imagine not doing? I can’t imagine not working with people, using and honing whatever social skills I possess to interact successfully with them, and to help them interact successfully with others, celebrating successes—theirs and mine—along the way! What is it you can't imagine not doing? Feel free to share your thoughts on Facebook or below, or email us!
And whatever it is, keep doing it, as I’m sure you and possibly many other people are benefiting from it!