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Never underestimate how beautifully small this world is, and the magic that can come from being open to making new connections.

I’ve been mostly off of LinkedIn for the past week+ as my husband and I visited Turkey.

Turkey was never on our bucket list, but we took the opportunity for the experience when we were invited to the wedding of the son of our dear friends from Minnesota, where he married a woman from Turkey.

The night before the wedding we were at the welcome dinner with ~60 other people at a traditional restaurant in Istanbul.

Midway through dinner I went downstairs to use the bathroom; when I walked out, the groom’s mom, Beth, was there and we started talking.

Another woman walked out of the bathroom, and Beth said, “Cynthia have you met Negar? This is Negar, Mina’s (the bride’s) cousin. Negar, this is my good friend Cynthia.”

Negar looked at me, took a beat, and said “Loni’s Cynthia?”

As my brain scrambled to make sense of what she’d said, she made the connection.

“I’m Negar, Loni’s friend.”

Then it clicked.

“Negar? Oh my gosh! I can’t believe I’m meeting you here in person!”

Beth, meanwhile, stood there looking very confused.

It's A Small World | Cynthia Farrell | 110 West Group

Negar Ferhangil and I were introduced by our mutual friend and former colleague Loni J. Sabo a few years back when Negar was exploring executive coaching programs. I’d recently completed one, so when Loni asked if I’d be open to talking with Negar about the program, in the interest of making connections and sharing experiences, I was happy to do so.

Since then we’ve spoken a few times and kept in contact to check in on our coaching experiences. It’s always been a delight to connect with Negar, and I’m grateful to Loni for suggesting the initial connection.

It was Negar who put together my face and name, in the waiting area of a basement bathroom in Istanbul at a dinner for a wedding where she’s a cousin of the bride and I’m a friend of the groom’s family.

The moment, the connection, was magical, and a story that got told multiple times over the weekend. “Oh, you’re one of the women who met in person for the first time here! What an incredible story!”

Besides being magical, this experience provided two reminders for me related to entrepreneurship and leadership:

  • Never underestimate how small the world is. And with that in mind, be kind. Speak with care. Leave well. The world is small and memories are long.
  • Be open to making new connections, especially to help others. I know time is tight and precious. But by saying yes and embracing expansiveness (my word of the year), you never know what magic might come about.

Negar, it was so incredible to meet you in person; and Loni, thank you for connecting us a few years ago. My life is richer having both of you in it.

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