When I wrote about the mechanical method yesterday, it got me thinking about applications of the technique outside of work and other tasks.
Wait, what’s the mechanical method?
From The Magic of Thinking Big, the mechanical method recommends overcoming fear or hesitation by mechanically forcing yourself into action.
I realized one thing I think about a lot but rarely act upon is mending relationships. Whether due to miscommunication, misunderstanding, or genuinely shitty behavior, I’ve caused some rifts with formerly close friends.
Maybe you have as well.
Connection is rare and valuable. Losing that connection means losing a lot, and sometimes it’s completely needless.
Mending a broken relationship is hard. It takes vulnerability and risk. And you may not be successful! But I think it’s worth attempting most of the time.
Not all relationships can be mended. And for some relationships (e.g. former significant others) it may be wise to let sleeping dogs lie. But friendships, business relationships, and more can usually be revisited.
If they aren’t, the rift can get worse. We don’t like unclosed loops (like trying to understand why things happened the way they did) and will often invent a narrative to close the loop in our mind. Whether correct or not, this often means projecting intent or malice upon someone else.
Before that happens, what if we apologize or express a desire to smooth things over?
And if you’re afraid to extend the olive branch, just start by using the mechanical method to take the first step.