I love music. Who doesn’t, right? For me, music evokes feelings and memories – it recalls special moments, interactions, sights and smells, and especially people. Music helps us to express ourselves when words alone may fail us.
For example, consider the song, “Don’t You Want Me?” by Human League. The year was 1984; it was the first time I traveled on my own, I was 13 years old and signed up to participate in an overseas student tour – nine countries in 28 days – with a group of peers from my junior high school. That song played constantly. When I hear it, I can’t help but smile and, wow, does it take me back. Truth told, that was a tough trip – I was homesick, I didn’t bring the right clothes, I was jet lagged and tired… but when the melody starts to play, moments of great joy come rushing back: My dad surprising me during our day in Rome while he was on a business trip to London… seeing the Eiffel Tower for the first time… the warmth of the sun as we ran along the beach in Greece… the sound of our laughter during a late night “slumber party” when five of us shared one large room in an old European hotel… dancing the night away at some disco… And, of course, I see faces… my best friend, Michele… my pals, Steve and Susie and Angie and Brad… that cool kid, Dave, from Colorado… and, of course, our chaperones, Mr. and Mrs. Cundiff, the gym teacher and guidance counselor dynamic duo, who took such loving care of us. Hearing “Don’t You Want Me?” offers a visceral experience every time.
There’s Paolo Nutini’s “New Shoes,” Rihanna’s “Umbrella,” Snow Patrol’s “Chasing Cars,” Chingy’s “Dem Jeans,” and so many others… all songs (and, apparently, accessories!) that my colleagues and I on Sprint’s Wireless Data Entertainment Team helped to popularize in the mobile market in the form of ringers, screensavers, ring tones, and, even full-length song downloads before anyone had even heard of an iPhone! We thought we had the coolest jobs on the planet (I think we were right) and we all loved it. When I hear any one of those ditties, again, I’m taken right back to those days and see my people… Laura, Fletch, the Kellys, Nancy, Chris, Colleen, Dan, Scott, Wade, Mac… the list goes on. What an amazing time in all of our lives. The music keeps those important friends present in my mind though that was a decade and a half ago and our lives have gone in so many different directions.
If you pause to think about it, wouldn’t you agree that so many of our life experiences come complete with their own soundtracks? Perhaps the song you danced to at your wedding, a lullaby you sang to your child, the “psych” tune you play before you walk into an important meeting, deliver a pitch, or take on a challenge? Music helps us to connect with others in a way that we might not otherwise be able to.
What’s on your playlist? Take a listen. Who do you think of when you hear those songs? Reconnect. Happy Networking!
P.S. – During my November 2017 writing frenzy, each day’s blog post was inspired by a song having something to do with relationship building. Like any good DJ, I even took requests! The playlist is available on Spotify. Check it out!