It occurred to me the other day the idea of a conversation has lost a little bit of meaning somewhere between Twitter and I don’t even know what. What ever happened to a deep, meaningful chat? Does it seem this way to you as well, has it disappeared completely? Instead of whinging about it I decided to find my own recipe for what makes a well-baked convo. After a few days of contemplating the idea of what makes a good conversation I have come to my own answers and I would like to share them with you.
I realize every judgement is a self judgement so naturally I took a good look at myself and where I could sharpen my conversation skills to a level in which I hold true value. What I found was this: I am a good listener; I hold the space for whoever is in front of me no matter what. If I am asked, I will respond and only from my experience. Anyone that knows me knows full well I will never give my opinion unless it is asked for. I used to be horrible at this until Moe gave me the practice of not giving my opinion for 24 hours. I invite you to try it, it ain’t easy. With time, I have learned to respond from my heart and not my chatter filled mind. When I am with someone I am “there”. I am present. I am open. I am loving. I have realized my life is less about me and more about others and I am very happy with this so having a conversation with someone is thrilling for me and I thoroughly enjoy everyone I meet. I love to hear people talk about what matters most in their lives and what they dream of. Listening is not the only element of a conversation though, there is more!
Responding is something that took me a long time to understand and like I said before, I used to be an opinion giver to anyone that would listen. Today, I realize I can respond from my heart but first I must center myself there; which requires mindfulness. If I am in my head I will respond from my mind and that is about the worst place I could come from. My mind is full of concepts and beliefs I don’t even consciously live by so why would I want to speak from there? From my heart is where the love is extended and a conversation is not complete without love.
I can imagine you may be thinking my idea of a good conversation sounds more like a sound board for others to talk and in all honesty you’re not far off. Do you ever feel as though you are brought into someones life for a reason? Well, I feel like that every time I sit with someone, I let them lead and see where I am needed from there. As I mentioned before, my life is not about ME in the sense of getting what I want, it is about giving and this makes me the happiest woman in the world.
When I sit at a kitchen table, living room or café with anyone, I design my time with them carefully and sincerely. There are no cell phones around, no computers and no need to answer to social media. There may be an occasional cold, wet whippet nose gracing the side of a leg though!
Nothing makes me happier than to have a conversation with someone who is present and centered. Have you thought about the way you converse back and forth to others? I would love to hear your recipe! Please do share. It is safe here.
Photo by Jocelyn Casey. Paris 2013.