Today we look at specific strategies to create deeper, richer conversations in our lives.
“Strategies” sounds official. Scientific. It’s actually easier than that. What follows are small, manageable actions we can take which may result in deeper conversations.
Strategy one is to allow ourselves to be impacted by what the other person is saying. “We can’t move the world unless we are willing to be moved by it,” suggests Vid Deva, Religious Scholar and Program Manager of Stagen’s Advanced Leadership Program which I have the privilege of participating in this year.
We set an intention to be curious. “Tell me more,” we say. We are open. In listening well, we open ourselves up to the feelings we feel.
Strategy two is to be vulnerable in what we share. For many of us, this isn’t our “go to.” Sometimes, we will feel resistance internally. Our bodies seem to contract. “I don’t want to be vulnerable right now,” we say.
We can choose to push through that resistance. We can lean in. We let ourselves feel it. And say it.
These two intentions: first, allow ourselves to be impacted by what the other person is saying; and second, to be vulnerable in what we share are in alignment with the ARE acronym used in couples therapy. We ask ourselves:
1: Are we available?
2: Are we responsive?
3: Are we engaged?
Three simple questions to ask ourselves that lead to connection.
Reflection: Think back on a conversation when my answer to one or more of the questions above was “no.”
Action: Journal about any lessons learned.