There’s a buzz word (or concept) floating around the business world called TOUCH POINTS. I’ve recently used this a few times in regards to personal touch points, as opposed to just the way corporate America uses this term. The term is commonly used in reference to perhaps a sales rep contacting a potential client. Essentially, it’s any interaction between a consumer and a business.
For the sake of this post, I really want to focus in on what matters most. Or what should matter most. Our families. Specifically our children. Pause for a moment and consider this question: are there any touch points between you and your spouse? Between you and your children? Between you and your parents? Extended family? Distant friends even? If so, what are they. Are you consistent with them. Or are there large gaps of time between when you intentionally interact with them.
As the father of 13-year old twins, and a 9-year old, needless to say, there is plenty of activity and busyness at this current stage of life. Most days we’re up at 6:20 AM, and if I’m lucky to finally get home, and start settling down before 9:00 PM, then it’s been a relatively slow day. With that said however, while we’re constantly busy, running around like crazy, from one activity or function to the next, am I really engaging and interacting with my precious loved ones. What are the touch points of our lives, where we really connect and interact?
This morning, I found myself responding to an email that detailed a little project that my 4th grader’s school is doing. They have asked all of the parents to send a letter in to the school, and on Tuesday, the students will read letters from their parents, letting them know how special they are and how much they love them. Wow! What a great idea!
Only problem was that I was writing the letter in a local Starbucks, and there’s a good chance, that those around me, if they were paying attention, must have wondered why I was bawling like a baby as I sat and typed at my computer. The more I typed, I cried, and the more I cried, I typed. I soon realized that this little assignment was a key touch point that could potentially make a huge difference in my precious little girl’s life. Of course, then, I started feeling sorry for the kids who might not actually get a letter from their parents.
**Note: the school’s staff prepares letters for any students who don’t receive letters from their parents.**
So, considering the fragile, emotional state I was in, I began to take a little trip down memory lane, and began to realize some key touch points from my own parents, who were all about little notes and letters over the years. In fact, I had the presence of mind, even as a youth, to save and preserve some of them. I remember receiving lengthy letters from my mother, as she poured out her heart and soul to her first born. I remember little notes (not quite as lengthy of course) from my father, just encouraging me and supporting and loving me, through the many challenges I would face as a young man. Sometimes he would slip them in my lunch box, which I’ve found myself doing all these years later, to my own children.
These touch points, whether in written format, or in creating and sharing special life moments with your loved ones, are so critical to the successful health and well-being of…to be honest…all of us. Don’t procrastinate. Don’t put these opportunities on the back burner. Life goes by too fast. Moments to make memories are here today, and gone tomorrow. As parents, we get maybe 18 years or so, to have our children in our homes, under our constant watch and care, where we can see them every day. And then, almost over night. Those moments are over. And then, what are we left with? Perhaps only the memories of our touch points.
Take some time today, and reach out in whatever method suits you, and create a long lasting touch point with a loved one.
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