In his book “12 Rules For Life” Jordan Petersen says, “Genuine conversation is exploration, articulation and strategizing.”  He goes on to say that , and I’m paraphrasing, by listening to an individual you might actually learn about their problems and how they’re solving them which in turn, can help you address some of your own issues.  Be active and present in the process.  Pay attention to whom you’re talking and you may learn something!  In Relational Intelligence Steve Saccone, “When it comes to being interested in people, the goal is not to be interested in every detail of their lives, but rather to discover what is interesting about them and draw it out.”  A good question to ask yourself is, “what makes them unique?”

What’s In It For Me?

Conversation is the beginning of relationship.  By introducing yourself you are starting a conversation with someone who may become a friend, mentor, partner or business acquaintance.  Your life can be seriously enhanced and purposeful with great relationships so let’s get to work and make some friends!

Labs

The “Be” in “Be Your Adventure” is a verb. In fact, we think of it as an action verb, because to be your adventure means taking action that moves your life in a positive direct. Labs are how that happens. Choose one (or more!) of the labs below as a way to take action on this topic! Learn more about labs.

Lab #1: So What’s Your Sign?

Attend a party or a networking event with the express purpose of collecting someone’s unique story.  Throw away the elementary questions and don’t talk about yourself.  Also stay away from yes and no questions.  Ask open ended questions such as,  “How did you get into this line of work?”  and “Where are you from originally?”  “What brought you to this town?” Be a good listener and engage with interest!

Lab #2: Embrace Small Talk

Whether it’s chatting with a coworker at lunchtime or striking up a short conversation with the person who serves you lunch make it a goal to ask a short but meaningful question.  This effort can show you are a little more interested than someone that passes them by and simply waves or smiles.  It may look like asking the waiter, “How are you doing today?” and a possible follow up would be, “Has it been a long day for you?” People love to know that someone cares.  To the coworker you may ask “What are you doing this weekend?” which could lead to other questions that inquire about family, hobbies and such.  Who knows you may find out about how they think and why they handle things the way they do at work.  Who knows, the next time you run in to these folks they may just ask you about yourself! 

Postgame

Now that you’ve taken action by choosing one or more of the labs and trying it/them out, the “Postgame” is how you share your results—including any insights you may have gained—with the community. Learn more about postgame reports.

  1. What did you learn about yourself when you focusing on asking about another person?  
  2. Did any new relationships come out these encounters? 
  3. Compare the experience of in person conversation to a text conversation.  

Throughout this Be Your Adventure series we want to become happier and healthier.  Learning how to make conversation helps us to TRULY connect to other people and improve our social well being which in turn helps our mental and physical health.  We need people and they need us!  Let’s show we care!  Be careful, you may actually learn something!  

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Val Oechslin

Creator, Be Your Adventure

Val Oechslin is passionate about helping people reach new heights, overcome obstacles, and become the person they’ve always dreamed of being. An artist, filmmaker, storyteller, and vision coach, Val makes her home in Bozeman, Montana with her husband, Tom.

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