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Nine Non-obvious ways to have deeper conversations – Not the David Brooks NY tips

Nine Nonobvious Ways to Have Deeper Conversations for Wednesday, Nov. 25, 2020 Blog#190

This is NOT  the David Brooks op-ed NY Times Tips.

I admire the writings of David Brooks—both his style and his content.  But since I am not subscribing to the NY Times, I can’t read what he says.

BUT I think the title and content is great.  So here is my version—

NINE Nonobvious Ways to Have Deeper Conversations

  1. In pandemic times especially, you’ve got to be prepared with direct and to the point ideas or opinions.   Everyone knows to limit 1) spread of respiratory droplets from mouth talking. 2) Even on Zoom, Skype, Telephone, Teams, Facetime— no one has time.
  2. So do this –Do the 3 P’s—Preparation, Preparation, Preparation
  3. Preparation- Figure out what topics are most important to you.  Here’s one idea.  People working in hospices have given out this advice of what to say when your death is imminent: “I’m  going to miss you.”  “I’m sorry.” “I forgive you.” “I love you.”   Whew those are certainly super deep.  Here are similar— “I have missed you.”  “I felt bad about…”   “I felt bad about  xxx  but I understand. “  “I like you.” “I enjoy you.”
  4. I would add to those four hospice statements, this one–—“Take care of yourself.”  Relatedly, in a daily life conversation, you could say:  “What happened last week or what did you do last week that was good, or happy….  For example, what was happy or good even really little—like you had a cup of coffee in the morning.”
  5. Consider opening  a conversation with: “How did the last week go for you?”  and if you want to follow-up “Do you feel like telling me more?”  If you get the body language or words that the other person does not want to say, just flow into changing the subject.
  6. Open conversations with an observation and not a question.  Observation just means a statement.  You could make it something you both have in common. The weather works. The place, season, how you know the hostess/host. Or comment on something  worn at that time by the other person.  Ideally the “observation” should be 60 seconds and no more than 2 or 3 minutes, maximum.
  7. Then if the other person does not respond with talking, then ask a question.   You already know this— some people do not volunteer information.  But if you ask them a question, they feel good about answering.
  8. One of my all- time favorite questions which works every time is “What do you think of that?”
  9. Use the other person’s response to extend out the conversation or perhaps take the conversation a bit deeper.   Easy is to stick to open ended questions which cannot be answered with “yes” or “no” word. Who, what, when, where, why, how.

Copyright 2020 Clear Talk Mastery, Inc.


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