Our guest for this week is Siddharth Anantharam, community architect, Business Head of Mindvalley’s ‘Evercoach’, and founder of ‘Life Circles’.
Siddharth Anantharam, also known as Sid, is really passionate about human connection. His guiding principle in life is to be interested rather than interesting which has allowed him to grow into a wonderful conversationalist, capable of creating meaningful connections with people very quickly. By asking powerful questions, a practice accompanied by intent and active listening, Sid gets people to share thoughts about the things they value most which creates an instant connection.
A unique set of skills and talents has helped him become the Business Head of ‘Evercoach’ – Mindvalley’s online school and community for coaches. Sid leads the ‘Evercoach’ team that combines the top ideas, training, research, and insights into a powerful, actionable and transformational experience. With ‘Evercoach’, he also hosts and speaks at large events all over the world.
In 2018, Sid and his 2 close friends co-founded ‘Life Circles’, an organization that helps people build meaningful relationships with themselves and others. By creating safe spaces for people to share and connect, they intend to help “build a more compassionate, connected and united world.” Their services cater to individuals, teams, communities, organizations, and through that, the planet itself.
They host several retreats throughout the year and if you’d like to learn more, check out their website! You’ll find out details about upcoming events along with where and when you can apply. You can also expect updates about a brand new card game they’re designed to spark and facilitate meaningful conversations – the release date is planned before the end of 2019!
Connect with Siddharth:
- LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/siddharth-anantharam/
- Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/sid_anantharam/
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/siddharth.anantharam
- Website: https://www.ourlifecircle.com/
In This Episode We Canvas:
Reconnecting with the Self
We ease into the conversation by going over the burning questions that were raised in Sid’s most recent Life Circle. The first burning question was related to the disconnection with the self that we’re experiencing in a time where technology has allowed us to connect with each other instantly, at all times.
“Everyone was looking really to say, ‘Hey, I know connection is important but we live in such a hyperconnected world yet we are not so hyperconnected with ourselves.’” – Siddharth Anantharam
Being Alone vs. Being Lonely
The second burning question was the distinction between being alone and being lonely. We’ve referenced this distinction later in our conversation and we discussed it in the context of mental health issues being connected to loneliness.
“The second thing that stood out was a lot of people confusing being alone with being lonely. Being alone actually made them lonelier, whereas, if you think about it, being alone is what they were really looking forward to authentically reconnect to themselves.” – Siddharth Anantharam
The 3 Ingredients to a Meaningful Conversation
Sid shared the three principles that allow for a meaningful conversation, which are:
1 – Vulnerability
“One of the biggest things I’ve realized about meaningful conversations when it comes to vulnerability is entering a conversation not knowing the outcome.” – Siddharth Anantharam
2 – Honesty
“Meaningful conversations require a level of honesty that is honesty both to understand and be understood.” – Siddharth Anantharam
3 – Perspective
“When people are having a conversation we are all wearing a pair of glasses. We are looking at the world through a pair of lenses and a conversation is really the simplest way for us to exchange our pair of glasses.” – Siddharth Anantharam
These are also the three principles that Sid and his colleagues base their Life Circles on.
“We go into each person’s burning questions and try to see how can we have honest and vulnerable conversations that give each person perspective to what they’re really thinking and feeling in the moment.” – Siddharth Anantharam
The Two Types of Disconnection
Diving deeper into the notion of disconnection, Sid again offers insights he acquired from his circles. He presents an ironic distinction between two groups of people experiencing disconnection in a completely different way. What makes it ironic is the fact that, in order to reconnect, they’d need to learn how to incorporate each other’s approach.
“There were two types of people in the room… One was people who were so connected to what they were doing in the world every single day that it was leading to burnout… And there was another spectrum of people… People who want to do so much in the world but were so connected to themselves that they keep prioritizing themselves first without doing the work.” – Siddharth Anantharam
The Power of Collective Wisdom
Collective wisdom is another principle that Sid’s work with ‘Life Circles’ is based on. Sid breaks it down for us and explains why it makes such a huge impact on our personal growth and transformation.
“I think that collective wisdom is all about using the experiences, the unique stories, the unique lessons that each one of us holds and putting it all in a space that it can brew and it can give back to each person what they need in that moment. Not what they want but what they need.” – Siddharth Anantharam
How to Be Alone
Now that we’ve determined that there’s a problem with mixing notions of being alone and being lonely, Sid continues to reflect on the things that can help us experience aloneness without the loneliness.
“Something that I have learned recently that has caused a huge spike in how I’m able to spend time alone with myself is really savoring – the Art of Savoring.” – Siddharth Anantharam
Looking for Like-Hearted People
According to Sid, in order to truly be, we need to search for like-hearted people. He acknowledges that having both like-minded and like-hearted types of people in our life can be useful but it’s important to recognize that they will be able to offer us different things in life.
“If you want to really be, you want to find people who are like-hearted. Who are able to create the space for you, who are able to give you the kind of energy you need.” – Siddharth Anantharam
The 3 Parameters for Evaluating Relationships
Sid offers a practical technique for evaluating relationships that is based on meaningful parameters. We’re not spoiling anything here, go check out the full episode!
“Ask yourself which of your longest relationships – how do they rate on these 3 parameters? And if they don’t rate high, then ask yourself… are these the relationships that really matter to you? – Siddharth Anantharam
The 6 Steps for Having a Really Good Conversation
Lastly, since Sid gave us the 3 ingredients we need for a meaningful conversation, he proceeds to share the necessary steps or how he calls it – the recipe. Make sure to listen to the podcast and find out what they are!
“These are the 6 simple steps that you can adapt to any conversation that you have!” – Siddharth Anantharam
Siddharth’s Message of Inspired Evolution
What a masterclass on human connection this has been! I’m really excited about our conversation and I’m so grateful that Sid shared his findings so selflessly. He literally provided us all with a framework for experiencing and creating meaningful conversations and gave us the tool we can use to reconnect with ourselves, each other and life. Siddharth invites and encourages us to listen intently and grow using the principles that are natural to us both biologically and culturally – through the means of human connection.
“We are wired to listen. It’s just about remembering something you already know.” – Siddharth Anantharam