Ah, I’m late! But I’m sticking to my goal of writing each week, so here I am.
This week, for Motivational Monday, I would like to focus on the topic of meaningful conversations.
One of my favorite quotes has always been by the remarkable, Bill Nye. It reads, “Everyone you will ever meet knows something that you don’t.” As I’ve watched the current climate surrounding conversation in our country become more heated and less civil, I can’t help but think that many of us have forgotten what it means to have a truly meaningful conversation.
In her Ted Talk entitled, “10 Ways to Have a Better Conversation,” speaker Celeste Headlee quotes famed therapist M. Scott Peckby by stating: “True listening requires a setting aside of oneself. And sometimes that means setting aside your personal opinion.”
If interested, you can watch the full-length video here: http://www.dailygood.org/story/1268/10-ways-to-have-a-better-conversation-ted-com/.
If not, here is the portion of her speech that I believe to be most appropriate in reorienting ourselves back towards engaging in meaningful conversations.
“All of this boils down to the same basic concept, and it is this one:
Be interested in other people.
You know, I grew up with a very famous grandfather, and there was kind of a ritual in my home. People would come over to talk to my grandparents, and after they would leave, my mother would come over to us, and she’d say, ‘Do you know who that was? She was the runner-up to Miss America. He was the mayor of Sacramento. She won a Pulitzer Prize. He’s a Russian ballet dancer.’ And I kind of grew up assuming everyone has some hidden, amazing thing about them. And honestly, I think it’s what makes me a better host. I keep my mouth shut as often as I possibly can, I keep my mind open, and I’m always prepared to be amazed, and I’m never disappointed.”
How awesome would it be if we all assumed, like Celeste, that everyone we meet has something amazing to offer?
I encourage you this week to listen with the intent to understand, not reply.
In doing so, try to be open and receptive to those that carry a different opinion than yours.
Most importantly, prepare yourself to be amazed. Sometimes the most important messages come from the places least expected.