Reflecting on the Inaugural “Talk to a Stranger Week”

The recent launch of the first “Talk to a Stranger Week” by the Gen Well Project, Canada’s human connection movement, aimed to educate people about the research-based benefits of talking to strangers. 

As a participant and volunteer in Calgary during this momentous week, it was a fascinating experience and a fun challenge. Sporting shirts bearing the prompt “Do you talk to strangers?” we distributed informative postcards, and engaged with people during the busy lunch hour in Calgary’s “Plus 15” network.

Meeting People Can Be a Challenge

Of course, we experienced resistance, as people may have expected that we were selling something while handing out the postcards. But our efforts were rewarding as we were able to create more awareness about the benefits of talking to strangers and did indeed get into conversations with folks. 

The activations in Toronto and Calgary led to significant media coverage, which amplified this awareness campaign. Taylor Braat from CBC Calgary did a short story on Talk To A Stranger Week for the 6pm news and I was invited a guest on the “Calgary Eyeopener” morning radio show with Loren McGinnis. Click HERE for that interview. 

The Gen Well Project founder, Pete Bombaci was also busy with multiple interviews in Toronto that broadcast across Canada. 

My involvement with this week was a reminder of how rewarding it can be to volunteer. Doing so allowed me to re-connect with friends and also to meet new people.

It was a true pleasure to have been a part of this important week and I look forward to supporting again in the future. 

Resources to Explore

Have a look at the Gen Well Project’s press release for Talk To A Stranger Week.

Check out the Gen Well Project Website below for events research and resources on how to meet new people.

https://genwellproject.org/

Below is the Talk To A Stranger Week Website:

https://talktoastrangerweek.org/

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Tony Esteves is an internationally renowned expert in fostering authentic human connections.

As the acclaimed author of “Talk2MorePeople: Change Your Life by Meeting people.” Tony presents a proven methodology for inviting fresh experiences, new connections, and untapped possibilities into your life and professional sphere. He is passionate about spending time in the mountains and being connected to nature.

Immerse yourself in meaningful work and thrive in our interconnected world at Talk2MorePeople.com. Discover how to forge deeper connections by registering for Tony’s free Human Connection Starter Kit and embark on a journey of personal and professional fulfillment. 

Join This Human Connection Movement

Harnessing the profound impact of human connection can revolutionize not only our personal lives but also our society as a whole. Recently, I had the privilege of attending the second annual Canadian Human Connection Conference in Toronto, Ontario. This was an event that left me inspired and eager to share why you should consider joining this transformative experience in the fall of 2024.

Canadian Human Connection Conference 2023. Photo courtesy of the Gen Well project.

This conference delved deep into the critical role of human connection in our lives. Numerous speakers referenced the U.S. Surgeon General’s Advisory on the Healing Effects of Social Connection and Community, published earlier this year.

The awareness and recognition of the power of social bonds are spreading globally.

Beyond personal connections, and the extensive research presented, the conference highlighted the incredible work of Pete Bombaci who is the founder of the Gen Well Project. This “Human Connection” movement, dedicated to fostering human connections, and educating Canadians on the importance of social health, has the potential to reshape our society profoundly.

As we discussed the significance of social connection, it became evident that there is momentum building. The Canadian federal government is now allocating resources to develop the “Canadian Social Connection Guidelines,” recognizing the vital importance of human connection for our overall well-being.

Attending this conference made me feel like an integral part of a movement that is poised to change the very fabric of our society. This initiative empowers us to become catalysts for transformation, driving change on a broader scale.

I’ve found a new community.

The conference also opened the door to a thriving professional community of passionate researchers and social practitioners. If you’ve got an eye for research, explore the Canadian Alliance for Social Connection & Health who are in partnership with the Gen Well Project. Beyond expanding our networks, we have the chance to influence and guide society toward a more interconnected, compassionate, and understanding future. I believe that we could use this now more than ever. 

Join us next year.

Looking ahead to next year, anticipation is building for a conference that promises to be even larger and more transformative. I’ll be sure to keep you informed on the opportunity to immerse yourself in this human connection movement.

In conclusion, don’t underestimate the potential of human connection to re-shape our society. Canada is poised to lead the way by implementing Social Connection Guidelines. These will be similar to the guidelines we have for fitness and nutrition. Embrace the power of human connection and become an integral part of a movement that’s redefining the way we connect and thrive together.

This is not just about personal growth; it’s about creating a brighter future for all.

 

Tony is the author of “Talk2MorePeople: Change Your Life by Meeting People,” which teaches people to uncover opportunities and adventures by putting down their phones and connecting with real, live people face-to-face. By registering for Tony’s free “Talk2MorePeople Tips” at https://tinyurl.com/T2MPnews/, you will receive a “Human Connection Starter Kit” with free sections from the book and other great resources to build human connection. Learn how to build more human connections into your life and business today at Talk2MorePeople.com.

A Celebration of Human Connection

I recently hosted an event called “The Human Connection Celebration” and it was a really special evening. The event was all about bringing people together to connect, network, share food, and listen to live music at it took place at the CanMore Together Community Hub. We had 20 participants and it was a beautiful night.

During the event, I gave a presentation on human connection where I celebrated the conclusion of my Talk2MorePeople Project that I concluded six years ago this week. During that project, I made a point of meeting at least one new stranger every day for a full year. I also announced that I had started a new 30-day challenge to meet a new stranger every day for 30 days in a row. This new challenge began on April 14th, 2023. Several people who participated in the original challenge years ago, were also present at the event.

 

We also had guest and contributing author, Tracey Delfs, who led a beautiful guided meditation that helped everyone to connect with themselves and each other. Following this, musical guest Tru Guy Stefan played a one-hour concert, which added to the soulful vibe of the night. The beautiful photography is by Beata Albert, who is the first stranger that I met this year. We were all on the ridge in Canmore when I started juggling just after the fireworks. It was my pleasure to hire her to capture my event. Check out her work HERE.

The event was a great success, and we made some amazing new connections throughout the night. It was truly inspiring to see people from different walks of life come together to celebrate the power of human connection.

If you are interested in following my current adventure of meeting strangers on YouTube, I invite you to do so on my new channel HERE. You never know who you might meet or what connections you might make along the way.

To read more detail about how to meet people, pick up the Talk2MorePeople Book.

Connect with Tony Esteves

Tony Esteves is a virtual and in-person Business Coach for Artists, author, facilitator, and circus performer living in beautiful Canmore, Alberta, Canada. With over a decade of coaching experience, he has helped many individuals and businesses achieve their goals. Tony is a passionate adventurer and has traveled to 40 countries, believing that adventure is an essential aspect of living a full life.

In addition to coaching, Tony is also an experienced facilitator who has led in-person learning experiences in Canada, the USA, South Africa, South America, Europe, and Japan. His mission on this planet is to bring people together and create more human connections.

Tony is the author of “Talk2MorePeople: Change Your Life by Meeting People,” which teaches people to uncover opportunities and adventures by putting down their phones and connecting with real, live people face-to-face. By registering for Tony’s free “Talk2MorePeople Tips” newsletter at https://tinyurl.com/T2MPnews/, you will receive a “Human Connection Starter Kit” with free sections from the book and other great resources to build human connection. Learn how to build more human connections into your life and business today at https://Talk2MorePeople.com.

Are you looking to broaden your social circle and meet new people from all over the world?

If so, look no further than Couchsurfing.com! This fantastic travel community offers travellers a unique way to connect with locals and other travellers alike, providing you with the opportunity to make unforgettable memories and forge lasting human connections. Below is a video interview with my two most recent guests in Canmore, Alberta. In this conversation, we talk about some of the benefits of using Couchsurfing, and Nicole and Vee share what their experience was like.

Here are 5 great reasons why meeting new people through Couchsurfing.com is an amazing way to build human connections.

  1. You’ll Meet Like-minded People

One of the most significant benefits of Couchsurfing.com is that you’ll meet like-minded people who share similar interests and passions. Whether you love hiking, cultural immersion, or simply exploring new places, you’ll find others who share your enthusiasm and are eager to connect with you. With Couchsurfing.com’s user-friendly interface, you can easily find people with whom you share common ground, making it easier to create meaningful connections.

  1. You’ll Gain Local Insights

By staying with locals or meeting up with them, you’ll gain an insider’s perspective on your destination, which can enrich your travel experience. Locals can give you insights into their city or town that you wouldn’t be able to get from guidebooks, websites, or even tour guides. They can also offer practical tips, like the best places to eat, shop, and explore, as well as hidden gems that you might not have discovered on your own.

  1. You’ll Expand Your Social Circle

Meeting new people through Couchsurfing is an excellent way to expand your social circle and make new friends from all over the world. You’ll have the opportunity to connect with people from different backgrounds and cultures, which can broaden your perspective and challenge your assumptions. Moreover, you’ll make connections that can last a lifetime, like our friends Nicole and Vee, who we met through Couchsurfing. It’s as if we have already known them for years because we consider them friends who will always be welcome to visit and stay with us in the future. 

  1. You’ll Save Money

Couchsurfing is a fantastic resource for budget-conscious travellers. By staying with locals, you can save money on accommodation, and you’ll have access to insider knowledge on how to navigate your destination on a budget. You can also participate in local activities or events that won’t break the bank.

  1. You’ll Build Human Connections

Ultimately, the best reason to meet new people through Couchsurfing is that it fosters meaningful human connections. Traveling can be a lonely experience, but by connecting with locals and other travellers, you’ll create bonds that can last a lifetime. These connections can lead to new opportunities, like job offers, travel companions, or even lifelong friendships.

So, what are you waiting for? Check out Couchsurfing today and start building your own human connections. As a bonus, you can start using the platform just to meet people for a coffee before you start hosting to test the waters.

Remember to sign up below for our “Human Connection Starter Kit,” a free resource that offers dozens of tips and tricks for building connections with others. Let’s make the world a more connected place, one connection at a time.

Tony Esteves is a virtual and in-person Business Coach for Artists, author, facilitator, and circus performer living in beautiful Canmore, Alberta, Canada. With over a decade of coaching experience, he has helped many individuals and businesses achieve their goals. Tony is a passionate adventurer and has traveled to 40 countries, believing that adventure is an essential aspect of living a full life.

In addition to coaching, Tony is also an experienced facilitator who has led in-person learning experiences in Canada, the USA, South Africa, South America, Europe, and Japan. His mission on this planet is to bring people together and create more human connections.

Tony is the author of “Talk2MorePeople: Change Your Life by Meeting People,” which teaches people to uncover opportunities and adventures by putting down their phones and connecting with real, live people face-to-face. By registering for Tony’s free “Talk2MorePeople Tips” at https://tinyurl.com/T2MPnews/, you will receive a FREE Human Connection Starter Kit including more than 80 different ways to meet new people. Learn how to build more human connections into your life and business today!

Canada is making history by introducing the world’s first Social Connection Guidelines, set to be released in the next few years. These guidelines aim to encourage individuals to develop more positive and meaningful relationships, both virtually and in-person, a crucial step in the current context where many people are experiencing increased disconnection due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

At the core of these guidelines is the understanding that social connections have a significant impact on our physical and mental health. Research has proven that individuals with strong social connections are more likely to live longer, have better overall health, and are better equipped to manage stress and difficult situations. 

The Harvard Study of Adult Development has even identified social relationships as the most critical factor in predicting a longer, healthier life.

On the other hand, loneliness and social isolation can lead to negative health outcomes, such as an increased risk of heart disease, depression, anxiety, substance use disorder, and cognitive decline. Unfortunately, many individuals are unaware of the harmful effects of isolation on physical health.

The Canadian Association for Social Connection and Health (CASCH), a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting social connection as a key determinant of health and well-being, has been leading the development of the Social Connection Guidelines. With the support of the Canadian government and in partnership with the GenWell Project led by Founder Pete Bombaci, CASCH has conducted extensive research on the importance of social connection and its impact on health. The forthcoming guidelines will offer practical tips and advice on building and maintaining meaningful social connections, covering topics such as starting a conversation with a stranger, joining a community group, or volunteering. For an excellent interview on CBC’s “The Current with Matt Galloway”, listen to the discussion with Dr. Gillian Sandstrom and Pete Bombaci here. 

While waiting for the official guidelines’ release, there are several things individuals can do to enhance their social connections. Attending human connection events, such as networking events, yoga classes, book clubs, or cooking workshops, is an excellent way to meet new people and form meaningful connections. Joining community groups and volunteering are also effective ways to give back to society while connecting with like-minded individuals.

In conclusion, Canada’s Social Connection Guidelines are a significant step towards promoting social connection as a key determinant of health and well-being. Positive social interactions are beneficial not just for our mental health but also our physical health, and by taking advantage of the practical tips and advice in the guidelines, individuals can start building more positive and meaningful relationships. Let’s embrace the power of social connection and start living happier and healthier lives. 

 

Tony Esteves is a virtual and in-person Business Coach for Artists, author, facilitator, and circus performer living in beautiful Canmore, Alberta, Canada. With over a decade of coaching experience, he has helped many individuals and businesses achieve their goals. Tony is a passionate adventurer and has traveled to 40 countries, believing that adventure is an essential aspect of living a full life.

In addition to coaching, Tony is also an experienced facilitator who has led in-person learning experiences in Canada, the USA, South Africa, South America, Europe, and Japan. His mission on this planet is to bring people together and create more human connections.

Tony is the author of “Talk2MorePeople: Change Your Life by Meeting People,” which teaches people to uncover opportunities and adventures by putting down their phones and connecting with real, live people face-to-face. By registering for Tony’s free “Talk2MorePeople Tips” at https://tinyurl.com/T2MPnews/, you will receive a FREE Human Connection Starter Kit including more than 80 different ways to meet new people. Learn how to build more human connections into your life and business today!

How is AI going to help build human connection?

Now that’s a great question. How do you envision the future of human connection with the rise of AI? Could it potentially bring us closer together or will it ultimately lead to further disconnection and isolation? Check out this video where I share my thoughts on how I think it is actually going to help build human connection. You are welcome to share your thoughts in the comments below the video.

Tony Esteves is a virtual and in-person Business Coach for Artists, author, facilitator, and circus performer living in beautiful Canmore, Alberta, Canada. With over a decade of coaching experience, he has helped many individuals and businesses achieve their goals. Tony is a passionate adventurer and has traveled to 40 countries, believing that adventure is an essential aspect of living a full life.

In addition to coaching, Tony is also an experienced facilitator who has led in-person learning experiences in Canada, the USA, South Africa, South America, Europe, and Japan. His mission on this planet is to bring people together and create more human connections.

Tony is the author of “Talk2MorePeople: Change Your Life by Meeting People,” which teaches people to uncover opportunities and adventures by putting down their phones and connecting with real, live people face-to-face. By registering for Tony’s free “Talk2MorePeople Tips” at https://tinyurl.com/T2MPnews/, you will receive a FREE Human Connection Starter Kit including more than 80 different ways to meet new people. Learn how to build more human connections into your life and business today!

This Start Stop Challenge just might change your life.

Here is your opportunity to join the Start Stop Challenge for January, 2023. Decide to start something and stop something this month and connect with people who are doing the same.

Research proves that having someone to keep you accountable greatly increases the likelihood that you’ll reach your goal so I’m looking for people to keep me accountable. Will you be one of them?

Sign Me Up!

Click on this LINK or the image below to fill out a short form to declare what you’ll start and stop in January of 2023. Prizes are available for your participation.

 

 

What are the Prizes?

I’m offering you a chance to win a coaching prize (worth over $500) by joining me on this self-improvement journey for 4 weeks. On January 31st, 2021, there will be a draw held between the people who have remained engaged with the challenge. That does not mean that you need to complete your challenge perfectly to qualify. Rather, you only need to show that you you are working on it by attending one or more zoom meetings with me in January, or by emailing in your progress.

If you are interested in a cash prize as was given last year, you are welcome to contribute $25 to the pot. There will also be a draw amongst those who contribute to the cash prize on January 31st. Anyone can participate, but only those who contribute to this cash prize will be eligible to win it. The size of the prize depends on the number of people who contribute to it.

What’s the Challenge?

To enter this draw, you only need to fill out a simple form letting me know at least one healthy habit that you are going to start doing (that you will do every day, daily) and at least one thing that you are going to stop doing (and not do for a single day) in January 2023. You don’t need to get your Start Stop Challenge perfect, but will need to remain engaged to qualify for the draws on January 31st. After filling out the form, you will receive an email from Tony with further details.

The deadline to enter is midnight MDT on Monday evening, January 2nd, 2023.

I’ll start my challenge on the first but know that some people will benefit from the extra two days to get started.

What I will START and STOP

I recommend that you commit to only one “start” and one “stop”, but you can do more if you like. Last year, I had a list of things that I wanted to start and stop, and food that I fell short in a few places. I believe that focusing on just one start objective and one stop objective will be most useful for this challenge.

Below is what I’m committing to for January 2023.

START:

Increased Daily Mindfulness Practice. 

I will do yoga and / or meditate every day this month for a minimum of 30 minutes

STOP:

No refined sugar.

I will consume no refined sugar this month. I will monitor this in great detail by checking the ingredients on any processed food and will not eat it if there is any form of refined sugar in that product.

How about you? What could you accomplish next month?

So don’t hesitate, take 3 minutes, register and help me and help yourself get the new year off to a great start!

Tony Esteves is a virtual and in-person Business Coach for Artists, author, facilitator, and circus performer living in beautiful Canmore, Alberta, Canada. With over a decade of coaching experience, he has helped many individuals and businesses achieve their goals. Tony is a passionate adventurer and has traveled to 40 countries, believing that adventure is an essential aspect of living a full life.

In addition to coaching, Tony is also an experienced facilitator who has led in-person learning experiences in Canada, the USA, South Africa, South America, Europe, and Japan. His mission on this planet is to bring people together and create more human connections.

Tony is the author of “Talk2MorePeople: Change Your Life by Meeting People,” which teaches people to uncover opportunities and adventures by putting down their phones and connecting with real, live people face-to-face. By registering for Tony’s free “Talk2MorePeople Tips” at https://tinyurl.com/T2MPnews/, you will receive a FREE Human Connection Starter Kit including more than 80 different ways to meet new people. Learn how to build more human connections into your life and business today!

Mental Health and Magic Mushrooms

This year has presented myself and my family with unprecedented challenges due to a tragic loss. For me to navigate this, I’ve chosen to be pro-active at finding and using three mental health supports available to me. I’m sharing this for you to consider how you might support yourself or a loved one in a time of need.

#1. I hired a coach who is guiding me towards and through my first medicine journey. I work as a coach myself, and am so grateful to have found a coach who can support me at this time. If you’ve never worked with a coach and would like to try, reply to this message and let’s talk.

#2. I started regular counselling with an excellent counsellor who I found through the Calgary Counseling Centre. Early this year, this organization received funding from the Alberta government to offer, “Effective and affordable counselling for all Albertans.” I highly recommend exploring their services – available on a sliding scale – if you, or someone you know would like mental health support at this time.

#3. Finally, I decided to try micro-dosing magic mushrooms or psilocybin for the first time. What I’m finding from consuming a 1/8 gram of this medicine every other day is a greater sense of groundedness, more certainty around the decisions I make, and an overall generally greater sense of well-being. People can take a smaller or larger dose and still be considered a “micro-dose” and this amount has been almost entirely sub-perceptual for me. If you are curious about the incredible healing powers of these so-called, “magic mushrooms”, look up the documentary called, “Fantastic Fungi” which is currently available on Netflix. For a very scientific explanation of how mushrooms could save the world, watch this TED Talk by Paul Stamets.

Alberta will be the first province in Canada to partially legalize the medical use of such substances in January 2023.

The combination of these three types of support have lifted me out of deep uncertainty and moments of hopelessness to a place of positivity and optimism in a relatively short period of time.

I see the way the that the mycelium network supports soil health and nutrient distribution in the earth relates to how we as people need a network to survive as social animals. It is profoundly important to nourish and care for our social connections for our own mental health. Connecting with new people is another way to be supported in this way.

Of course, none of what I have shared above is prescriptive. This is all just my own experience. We should always speak with a mental health professional before making any decision about how to better take care of ourselves.

I encourage you to consider what options might be readily available to you at a time when you need support for your mental health.

 

Tony Esteves is a virtual and in-person Business Coach for Artists, author, facilitator, and circus performer living in beautiful Canmore, Alberta, Canada. With over a decade of coaching experience, he has helped many individuals and businesses achieve their goals. Tony is a passionate adventurer and has traveled to 40 countries, believing that adventure is an essential aspect of living a full life.

In addition to coaching, Tony is also an experienced facilitator who has led in-person learning experiences in Canada, the USA, South Africa, South America, Europe, and Japan. His mission on this planet is to bring people together and create more human connections.

Tony is the author of “Talk2MorePeople: Change Your Life by Meeting People,” which teaches people to uncover opportunities and adventures by putting down their phones and connecting with real, live people face-to-face. By registering for Tony’s free “Talk2MorePeople Tips” at https://tinyurl.com/T2MPnews/, you will receive a FREE Human Connection Starter Kit including more than 80 different ways to meet new people. Learn how to build more human connections into your life and business today!

“Stranger Encounters” is a segment on how I met someone  new recently. Take what you like from my experience to learn how to meet people, in real life. 

 

 

April 13, 2023

While preparing to start our hike of Ha Ling Peak in Canmore, Alberta, a man approached us and asked if we were about to hike it. We told him that “yes”, we were. He asked if we had done it before, to which we replied, “yes” again. 

And then to my surprise, he asked, “Can we hike with you?” Again, we said, “yes”. This was a real pleasure for me, as I am typically the person who goes up and meets new people. It was neat to be on the receiving end. I must admit, that when Chris first approached us, I was a little hesitant. A thought went through my mind of, “What does this person want from me?” Thankfully that concern lasted less than two seconds, so I was prepared to say “yes” immediately when he asked if we could hike together. But this reminded me of how many people get stuck in that negative mindset. And that’s a shame as almost everyone I meet are very pleasant people.

That’s how I met Chris and his cousin, Mark, and friend, Trevor. They were on a day off after a busy week of work in Calgary and are out on a work project from Ontario. 

We hiked the first 2/3 of the mountain with them, met them at the top and then saw them after the hike as I offered to drop off their rental equipment in the morning. While at our place, we shared more laughs and then there was a spontaneous glow in the dark juggling show. I tol

d them that this is the prize for being open to meeting strangers. 

Mike shared a great story of how he met another Rasta in a grocery store in Jamaica, and then before he knew it, they were having a meal together and he even scored a great place to stay.

It was a joy to meet these three people who were new to hiking on this beautiful, snowy April day. 

April 3, 2023

Vee and Nic from the travellers network, Couchsurfing.com stayed in our home for two nights and we had a lovely time together sharing stories, food, time in nature and life. See the video below for a short interview. 


March 24, 2023

When I saw the bicycle with the trailer parked outside the Safeway, I suspected that I might bump into another cyclist. Once I came out of the store, I was not disappointed.

That’s when I met the very well known, local legend, Crazy Larry. I said hello by asking which direction he was going and he went right into a whole bunch of stories. We probably talked for about 15 minutes and it was really joyful.

One of the things that I love the most about our visit, was how many people said hello to him by name as we stood outside talking. He also told me that he is very well known locally and I see this as evidence of someone who has a very rich life. Feeling connected to people is one way we can literally extend our lives. Check out the research on the link in my bio if you are curious. 

Connect with people. It’s good for you and good for them.

March 23, 2023

While listening to the excellent music of Mr Bird, I overheard Chelsea and Andy talking about how to say something in Russian. As I lived in Russian speaking countries for about two years, I understand a bit of the language, so I used this as my excuse to say hello. I approached them by saying, “I just overheard you speaking about the Russian language?” And by saying that, I was very warmly invited into the conversation. I’m sure it didn’t hurt that they had likely already had a drink or two, and the interaction was fun and pleasant. 

 

Feb 14, 2023

As part of the “Human Connection Challenge” by Dr. Caroline Brookfield, I had to meet a stranger and the theme for today was, “Novelty”. Her suggestion was to read something that we would normally scroll past, and then to use that as a way to connect with someone else. 

So I went skating on the pond in Canmore. I noticed myself feeling a bit nervous at the idea of having to speak to a stranger, even though I love meeting people and have had almost entirely positive experiences from intentionally meeting over 3000 strangers (outside of my work) over the years. 

I decided to approach two skaters who had stopped skating but were still on the ice, and this is how I approach them. “Excuse me, have you heard of ChatGPT?” In French accents, they both replied, “No”. I explained that it’s AI technology that is very popular on the internet now to which the man replied, “I don’t really spend much time on computers.” And then I said, “That’s awesome!” I encourage people to meet people in the real world.

From here, we easily had a great conversation. I decided to invite them to an upcoming in-person gathering that I’ll host on March 2nd and he gave me his email address as we live in the same part of Canmore. 

This was really uplifting for me and I hope to see Gwen again soon. Thanks for the challenge.

Day 2 Complete.

February 13, 2023 

I was in my hometown of London, Ontario, Canada, waiting to board my flight. As I listened to a captivating webinar about AI, I overheard the people in front of me discussing the ease of flying out of London compared to Toronto’s Pearson Airport. I joined the conversation since I could relate to their experience and shared my own thoughts about flying out of London. This led to a pleasant conversation with one of the men, as we boarded the plane. He shared his recent flight cancellation experience, and I listened attentively. This experience of starting a conversation with a stranger came naturally and didn’t take up any extra time. It happened because I was being present. 

If you have a structured and predictable life, it may be helpful to consider adding something new, such as a new activity or sport, or letting go of something that doesn’t fulfill you. Additionally, consider the opportunities around you to practice Talk2MorePeople Listening. This intentional and respectful overhearing of conversations can lead to chances to join and contribute to them. Remember, such opportunities require intention rather than time. (For more information, see page 17 of the T2MP book.)

You can get your free copy of the Talk2MorePeople book at https://tinyurl.com/T2MPnews/

Feb 12, 2023

It was such a treat to have met Rich on this day. At the time, I was traveling with another stranger, Caleb, whom I met through the ride-sharing app, “Poparide” https://www.poparide.com Rich approached the vehicle and held up a card explaining that he was deaf. I read this, and we gave him $5. This was followed by a really enjoyable interaction. I also greatly enjoyed the conversation that I had with my ride-share guest, Caleb. Connecting with strangers is so important. Below is a link to a recent podcast on what the research currently says about how these small interactions with strangers can actually help you with your mental AND physical health! This is the podcast where the researcher who I cite in the Talk2MorePeople book, Dr. Gillian Sandstrom, speaks with the founder of the GEN Well Project, Pete Bombaci. They discuss the mental and physical health benefits from connecting with people and also touch on the national social connection guidelines that are being developed in Canada. Exciting stuff! The Current on CBC: https://www.cbc.ca/listen/live-radio/…

 

February 25, 2023 at the Emerald Lake Lodge

My partner and I recently stayed at the Emerald Lake Lodge to celebrate both of our birthdays. While on the shuttle to the cabins, we met Rob and Terry. They were on their way to visit family in Calgary and stopped to spend a couple of nights here. Rob had photography equipment so I asked him about it. He told me that he’s been a professional photographer for much of his life. He kindly gave me his card and invited me to check out his website.

I’m sure glad that I did! Based in Nelson, BC, Rob’s photography is simply stunning. You can see it HERE. (and see one of his photos above).

We also got to visit with them as well all walked to our cabins together down a beautiful, snowy small road. This place is magical in the winter time. You can check out my 360 video playlist from that day HERE.

We’ve been in touch by email since meeting then. I don’t know if I’ll see these kind people again or not at this time, but I remember feeling warmed at the opportunity to check out his work and to stay in touch. This was a reminder to me of what the research says about the importance of connecting with people – it’s good for our moods. It’s good for us.

And, you never know. Maybe we will meet again one day.

It was lovely to have met you Rob and Terry!

The photo below was sent to me by Rob.

February 8, 2023 at Gibbons Park, London, Ontario

Today, met Gary bishop in Gibbons Park. He had a huge lens on one of the two cameras that were wrapped around his neck and I met him by asking, “What are you shooting today?”

I was just curious.

This lead us into a really enjoyable conversation for about 10 minutes about the animals in this park. He let us know about a family of owls. I was there with my mother and she was so happy to have met someone new. Check out our experience in the VIDEO below. Meeting people is good for you. Get out there and Talk2MorePeople.

July 20th, 2022 at Mt. Nelson Athletic Park, Invermere, BC

On this  morning in Invermere, British Columbia, I met David, his wife Jennie, and their children in the park pictured above. I enjoyed watching the family play a game of Ultimate Frisbee while having my morning coffee on a park bench. It was fun to witness this family play together and to hear the parents competitive sides come out. I used to play Ultimate Frisbee so that was the excuse that I used to say hello to them.

I approached them by saying, “Hello. I just wanted to say that I enjoyed seeing you play Ultimate Frisbee because I used to play Ultimate.”

Notice how I didn’t sit and try to scheme something clever to say, but rather, I pretty much just explained what I observed as my ice-breaker. I did consider that they might not want to hear from me – a total stranger – but I know from experience and from the research that I likely wouldn’t get rejected.

And this lead into a really enjoyable conversation.

They shared how as parents they are happy to play two-on-two Ultimate with two of their three children.

We also talked about van-camping as my partner and I had slept in our camperized van on a random street the night before. Their family is considering doing so in the future as well so David in particular had lots of questions for me. On this subject, we had what I call an “Information Gift-Exchange”. You can read about this concept in the Talk2MorePeople book.

I gave David a Talk2MorePeople sticker that has my contact information on the back. He told me a story about how he met one of his best friends eight years ago while walking with his young daughter. In that instance he invited the stranger over to his house for a barbeque and they have become lifelong friends.

Often when I meet new people, I invite them to remain in contact with me by giving them a sticker. When I do this, it’s always so enjoyable to hear how often people share their stories with me about how meeting a stranger once changed their lives.

I’m grateful for this enjoyable conversation and to have met them. It brightened up my already sunny morning. You can use your simple observations to connect with new people and you may very well be surprised just how well those conversations can go.

 

Tony Esteves is a virtual and in-person Business Coach for Artists, author, facilitator, and circus performer living in beautiful Canmore, Alberta, Canada. With over a decade of coaching experience, he has helped many individuals and businesses achieve their goals. Tony is a passionate adventurer and has traveled to 40 countries, believing that adventure is an essential aspect of living a full life.

In addition to coaching, Tony is also an experienced facilitator who has led in-person learning experiences in Canada, the USA, South Africa, South America, Europe, and Japan. His mission on this planet is to bring people together and create more human connections.

Tony is the author of “Talk2MorePeople: Change Your Life by Meeting People,” which teaches people to uncover opportunities and adventures by putting down their phones and connecting with real, live people face-to-face. By registering for Tony’s free “Talk2MorePeople Tips” at https://tinyurl.com/T2MPnews/, you will receive a FREE Human Connection Starter Kit including more than 80 different ways to meet new people. Learn how to build more human connections into your life and business today!

This Start Stop Challenge just might change your life.

While doing an online yoga class for the first time in weeks yesterday, I got an idea. As I’ve benefited greatly from doing 30-day challenges in the past, I thought, “Why not do a healthy 30 day challenge in January?” Of course as January has 31 days, let’s call it a 31 day challenge. “I’ll do a yoga class every day for the month” I thought, but I know that I can do more than that.

Research proves that having someone to keep you accountable greatly increases the likelihood that you’ll reach your goal so I’m looking for people to keep me accountable. Will you be one of them?

Sign Me Up!

Click on the image below to fill out a short form and to enter the draw to win $250 by participating in the Start Stop Challenge.

 

 

What’s the Prize?

I’m offering you a chance to win $250 CAD by joining me on this self-improvement journey for 4 weeks. On January 31st, 2021, there will be a draw held between the people who have remained engaged with the challenge. That does not mean that you need to complete your challenge perfectly to qualify. Rather, you only need to show that you you are working on it by attending one or more zoom meetings with me in January, by emailing in your progress or by indicating your actions on Instagram. I will pay out this prize only if I have at least 10 participants for this challenge, so if you know of anyone else who would be interested to join, please forward them this LINK to this page.

What’s the Challenge?

To enter this draw, you only need to fill out a simple form letting me know at least one healthy habit that you are going to start doing (that you will do every day, daily) and at least one thing that you are going to stop doing (and not do for a single day) in January 2022. You don’t need to get your Start Stop Challenge perfect, but will need to remain engaged to qualify for the draw on January 31st. After filling out the form, you will receive an email from Tony with further details.

The deadline to enter is midnight MDT on Sunday evening, January 2nd.

I’ll start my challenge on the first but know that some people will benefit from the extra two days to get started. This short video below explains the concept.

Why is there a prize for participation?

1. I genuinely want other people to play towards their own self-improvement goals with me, and a little incentive can make the difference between thinking, “Oh, yeah, that sounds interesting” to “Heck, I’ll sign up now!”

2. I do good work in the world as a virtual event producer and a Solution-Focused coach. Since I left Facebook at the end of August, 2021, I’ve been on social media much less. This has been great for me and I’m ready to have fun with a new project. I know that this project has the potential to help many people and can also put the spotlight on the good work that I do. 

3. I love a good challenge.

What I will START and STOP

You only need to commit to one “start” and one “stop”, but you can do more if you like. Below is what I’m committing to for January 2022.

START:

Yoga every day. I recommend this YouTube yoga instructor named, “Kasandra”. I’ll take her “Morning Yoga Movment 30-day challenge“.  These classes are all around 10 minutes long.

Green smoothie every day. I like the recipe created in “Wildfit” called the “Alkagizer”. Blend up 1/2 avocado with 1 piece of celery, about 3 inches of cucumber and your choice of greens. Yummy!

Outdoor movement every day. I’ll go for a walk or get some kind of exercise every day in January. If you fancy a day on the slopes, reach out to me as I’ve got a season pass at Lake Louise and go often.

Daily Journalling. I’ll write a list of things that I’m grateful for every morning and also set an intention every day this month in my writing process.

STOP:

No caffeine. I’ll take a break from my love of coffee and also not drink tea in January 2022.

No alcohol. I’ll do a “Dry January” and won’t take even a sip of a pint or a tasty cocktail this month. January is always a great time to give my body a break from alcohol. Sometimes it lasts for several months and I find that my energy is much better without it.

By participating in this challenge, you will be invited to some optional free events on Zoom to connect with other people taking the challenge, you may be offered a complimentary coaching session and you will almost certainly have fun.

How about you? What could you accomplish next month?

So don’t hesitate, take 3 minutes, register and help me and help yourself get the new year off to a great start!

Tony Esteves is a virtual event producer and facilitator at Neole Inc, a solution focused coach and a circus performer. Tony is also the author of the book, “Talk2MorePeople: Change Your Life by Meeting people.” He is passionate about spending time in the mountains and creating human connection. He also owns a mirror suit. To connect on LinkedIn or to find Tony in other digital spaces, click HERE