I know a man who makes me feel like a million dollars. When he sees me his face lights up. When he talks to me he makes eye contact, he listens to what I say, he engages in witty and active conversation. He tells me how happy he is to see me. He encourages me to see him again as soon as possible. He makes me feel amazing, and interesting, and adored.
I know a restaurant that makes me feel like a million dollars. When I drop in for dinner, they hug me and make be feel like it's been far too long since I ate there. I always apologise for never having a reservation and they pshaw and say I never need one, that there is always room for me. They settle me down and they bring me food. They check on me throughout the dining experience. They talk to me and listen to what I say. They're cheeky and funny and pose for selfies with me. They make me feel amazing, and interesting, and adored.
I went to a function where the man who makes me feel like a million dollars attended. I watched him with other people: women in particular. I saw him be the same way; he was engaging and witty with everyone. They responded with their full attention. I could see he made all the people he spoke to feel like a million bucks.
I attended a function at the restaurant along with a lot of other 'regulars' (as it turned out) and I saw them being treated the way I was; warm greetings and first-name basis. Eye contact and witty banter. Extra attention and a wonderful dining experience.
At first I was all like: aw man that's stink - it's not just me.
But then I realised: what an awesome skill to make us feel that way. What a fabulous customer experience I have in that restaurant and why the man in question is a fantastic interviewer (and does-so for a living).
In both cases, there is authenticity. There is nothing "fake" in our relationships or the relationships they have with other people. It is definitely a skill that could be stand to be honed in my life.
Boy oh boy that restaurant is lucky to have found so many staff members who can pull that experience thing off. Boy oh boy I'm pretty lucky to be able to spend time with the man who makes me feel like a million bucks because we all love to feel that way, right?
There is a man I pass most mornings when I walk from the bus to work. He sits outside the 7-11 and asks passers-by for food or money. Well, I should clarify, he *eventually* asks people for food or money. His first contact with most of us is a "good morning" or "have a good day". He moves on to asking what the time is, or wondering what the weather is like. He builds micro-relationships with us all before asking for food or money.
Sometimes I see people dropping coins into his hat or beer tray or bucket - which ever he's using on the day - and sometimes I see people handing him cups of coffee or pies or fruit.
Here's the thing though: he pours the coffee across the footpath if he's doesn't want it. I've seen him throwing the apples and oranges people have given him into the road trying to hit cars - he's got a pretty good arm. It's money he wants, not the other stuff, and he manipulates us into giving it to him.
I don't feel he's not authentic - he doesn't really need what he's asking for - he makes me feel negative feelings about him and about myself.