Leanne Spencer posing with audience as wild animals for her spirit animal exercise.

Sharing Your Spirit Animal

Social connections: a big topic that I’ve been talking a lot about recently. In fact, I believe they are the next frontier of wellbeing, which is the topic of my latest keynote, BOND. But did you know that, according to studies, if you reveal something small and relatively insignificant about yourself to another person, it can really help to open up a connection with them? And it’s this idea that I want to discuss this more with you today, as well as how I like to do it with an exercise called ‘sharing your spirit animal’.

A Lone Wolf

It’s really very simple, and I often like to do this as an icebreaker when opening up keynotes, or just for a bit of fun. I ask, “What’s your spirit animal and why?” And actually, in revealing that, it says a lot more about a person than you might think. For example, my spirit animal is a lone wolf. I like to be on my own, particularly when problem solving. I spend four days a week in my office, which I don’t share with anyone else. So, there’s a lot of information about me that you can unpack from me telling you my spirit animal: someone who likes to be on their own. An introvert, perhaps, who chooses to run with the pack when she wants or needs to…

Making Connections

So, what about you, what’s your spirit animal? And what does that say about who you are? Next time you’re out and about, have a go at sharing a little bit about yourself. Of course, it doesn’t need to be a spirit animal – that might be a bit left field! We are only just beginning to appreciate the importance of social relationships for wellbeing, and how it’s just as essential as diet or exercise. So, give it a try, and see if that helps you to connect with somebody new, or strengthen an existing connection. 

BOND: Social relationships in the age of AI

Social relationships serve a critical purpose in our lives. They not only increase our healthspan (help us to live as long and healthy as possible), they also drive meaning and purpose, improve communication and enhance stress resilience – which is particularly important for multigenerational teams! In my brand new keynote, I use the power of storytelling to improve trust, belonging and connection across organisations using the BOND Approach. If you’re interested in sharing this message with your people, click here to find out more and get in touch to book a free discovery call.

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