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90 Second Relationship Rule

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Jim Fannin’s 90 second rule makes a lot of sense. Watch the video. It’s 7 minutes and 15 seconds.

Here’s the gist:

If you’ve been away from someone you care about at least 2 hours, the next 90 seconds have a bigger impact on them than spending hours and hours on them later. Walk in the door and be fully engaged in the moment. Regardless of your day prepare to focus your energy toward the people that matter most. See their every facial and hand gesture. Hear every voice tone or inflection. And if the person you meet is sad, then use a technique inside the 90 second rule called mirroring. Act sad so you can show empathy. Now you can raise them to a higher level of positivity. If the person you meet is happy, be just as happy to keep their level of positivity the same.

Investing those first 90 seconds says:

I love you
I care about you
I value you
I need you in my life

This has been VERY true for me. When I see my friends that I haven’t seen in a long time, I always give them my full attention for at least a few minutes. Then I can reconnect with another friend, and another friend, and another friend.

I do the same thing with my brothers and my other family.

I just never thought of the importance of this connection time before I watched this little video.

What do you think?

Can you use this tip to build upon your most important relationships?

Leave a Comment



  1. Nancy McInnes says:

    What a great video – it takes so little time to really make someone feel valued and loved, but requires complete presence. Not something we’re as good at anymore in this multitasking world! Thanks for sharing, Phil

  2. My DOGS knows the 90 second rule better than I do. Very powerful video. Thanks Phil!

  3. I think that’s a fantabulous idea, Phil. I extend it to five minutes when my darlin’ daughters get home from school each day, and it’s a beautiful connection.

  4. Hi Phil .. really good video .. thanks for sharing with us. I try and do this – but perhaps we move on too quickly .. excellent to have had this as a reminder –

    Hilary Melton-Butcher
    Positive Letters

  5. Hi Phil:

    Thanks for sharing this video and your thoughts. I know this is something I need to work on and something that is important to keep relationships strong. This is important stuff.

  6. Thanks so much for sharing this awesome video, Phil. The 90 second rule is so simple, yet it could create such significant impact on one’s life. Simply amazing. I think that is why human beings love dogs so much cos’ when it comes to giving undivided attention, the dogs are the master.



  7. Ron Kibbe says:


    Very cool video. I showed it to my staff yesterday and had a great discussion based upon it. Thanks for the post

  8. That was a very moving video – so true for family, friends and close loved ones. And, I wonder what would happen if we treated employees, employers and customers with the same rule to be fully engaged, make eye contact and other appropriate signs of caring about the other person. Wow.

    I have had the privilege of knowing people that have knowingly or unknowingly given me their undivided attention to show me they care. What a blessing to be on the receiving end.

    I will be more aware of this from this day forward. Thank you for the reminder.

  9. Helen (commenter no 2),

    Now I know why many people love their dogs more than their spouse.

  10. It is a good rule of thumb. Stops you from taking the most important part of your life for granted.

  11. VERY powerful, Phil, and so easy to lose the potent, important connections in the moment. Easy to lose 90 second opportunities for richness and love. What a difference re-focusing can make.



  12. Brittainy says:

    That is great to read…I am about to pick up my boyfriend at the airport after 2 weeks of him being back home with his family and this was a nice reminder for me to make the most out of the moment and cherish the time that I see him, not only in a short while, but long after that. Thanks for the good words!


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