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25 best ice breaker questions
These are fucking gold. Amazing. Works in any situation
social-skills  icebreaker  game 
5 days ago by snapsocialguru
Opinion | For a Better Marriage, Act Like a Single Person - The New York Times
Having a large network of friends rather than relying mainly on family is especially beneficial. A long-term study of more than 6,500 Britons found that men and women who reported having 10 or more friendships at age 45 had significantly higher levels of psychological well-being at age 50, whatever their partnership status, than people with fewer friends. And two recent studies of nearly 280,000 people in almost 100 countries by William Chopik of Michigan State University found that friendships become increasingly vital to well-being at older ages. Among older adults, relationships with friends are a better predictor of good health and happiness than relations with family.
social-skills  relationships  health  via:ramitsethi 
6 days ago by eaconley
Opinion | For a Better Marriage, Act Like a Single Person - The New York Times
Having a large network of friends rather than relying mainly on family is especially beneficial. A long-term study of more than 6,500 Britons found that men and women who reported having 10 or more friendships at age 45 had significantly higher levels of psychological well-being at age 50, whatever their partnership status, than people with fewer friends. And two recent studies of nearly 280,000 people in almost 100 countries by William Chopik of Michigan State University found that friendships become increasingly vital to well-being at older ages. Among older adults, relationships with friends are a better predictor of good health and happiness than relations with family.
social-skills  relationships  health 
7 days ago by ramitsethi
(*) Stephanie Hurlburt on Twitter: "Examples of banned self deprecating comments. 🚫 "My project is..." - very small/basic/simple - not that good - a thing I wrote - just by a… https://t.co/o3FcBHMf25"
Stephanie Hurlburt Retweeted Stephanie Hurlburt
Half the women sending me blog posts do it with a self deprecating comment.

It's not hard to just write the title of blog post + link. Self deprecation is a shield. It's a "You can't hurt me by saying my work's bad, because I said it first."

And it will hurt your career. Stop.

Examples of banned self deprecating comments. 🚫

"My project is..."
- very small/basic/simple
- not that good
- a thing I wrote
- just by a newbie
- something I didn't spend a lot of time/effort on
- silly
- not that useful

Just state the topic and let others be the judge.
gender  conversation  career-promotions  social-skills  via:ramitsethi 
21 days ago by abemaingi
Sarah Mei: How She Improved her communication skills (advice)
Folks often ask me how they can improve their communication skills (including in response to this from yesterday). I feel like I haven’t been able to answer that question very well, because the way I did it doesn’t feel like it generalizes.
sarah-mei  social-skills  Twitter-moments 
29 days ago by yolandaenoch
(14) Grace Chu's answer to What is the best or most diplomatic way to say 'no' if someone asks you to swap seats with them on an airplane? - Quora
I often fly by myself, wearing laid-back, comfortable clothes. I look young and accommodating, so other travelers and even FAs often think I’m the easiest person to ask.

Here’s my sliding scale of agreeableness:

50% of the time, the person has a reasonable request, and is polite or neutral in making the request. I agree.

10% of the time, something seems off. I say “Mind if I take a look before I decide?” and look at the other seat (and surrounding occupants) before deciding.

20% of the time, there’s a particular reason I don’t want to move (I’m seated near the front and I really need to get off the plane quickly upon landing, or I’m flying with someone who is already asleep). “I’d like to help you, but this time I can’t.”

20% of the time, the requestor seems to believe s/he is entitled to my seat. Once, when I was next to an empty seat, a couple said to each other, “What about that one? She'll move.” Another time, a woman talking on her phone jutted out her chin at me, and paused in her scintillating conversation long enough to tell her friend, “Get that one to move.” I smiled and said, “Would it be okay if I kept the seat I paid for?” (I noticed only after I wrote my answer: These incidents occurred a year apart, but both times I was “that one” — an object someone points to, not a person, a “someone,” myself.)
conversation  social-skills  via:ramitsethi 
6 weeks ago by eaconley
(14) Grace Chu's answer to What is the best or most diplomatic way to say 'no' if someone asks you to swap seats with them on an airplane? - Quora
I often fly by myself, wearing laid-back, comfortable clothes. I look young and accommodating, so other travelers and even FAs often think I’m the easiest person to ask.

Here’s my sliding scale of agreeableness:

50% of the time, the person has a reasonable request, and is polite or neutral in making the request. I agree.

10% of the time, something seems off. I say “Mind if I take a look before I decide?” and look at the other seat (and surrounding occupants) before deciding.

20% of the time, there’s a particular reason I don’t want to move (I’m seated near the front and I really need to get off the plane quickly upon landing, or I’m flying with someone who is already asleep). “I’d like to help you, but this time I can’t.”

20% of the time, the requestor seems to believe s/he is entitled to my seat. Once, when I was next to an empty seat, a couple said to each other, “What about that one? She'll move.” Another time, a woman talking on her phone jutted out her chin at me, and paused in her scintillating conversation long enough to tell her friend, “Get that one to move.” I smiled and said, “Would it be okay if I kept the seat I paid for?” (I noticed only after I wrote my answer: These incidents occurred a year apart, but both times I was “that one” — an object someone points to, not a person, a “someone,” myself.)
conversation  social-skills 
6 weeks ago by ramitsethi
How to tell if you're a 'conversational narcissist'
A “support response” is the opposite of a “shift response.” It’s a response that focuses on the thoughts and feelings of the other person, according to Headlee. It shows them you are paying attention and encourages them to continue speaking.

“A support response basically says two things: It says ‘I hear you’ and ‘Please continue,’” she says.

You can use shift responses in a conversation, explains Headlee, so long as you balance them with support responses.
nbc-news  conversational-narcissism  death  grief  social-skills 
8 weeks ago by yolandaenoch
Christmas blues: 4 ways we mess up comforting friends: Sheryl Sandberg
Holiday blues: Four mistakes we make when comforting friends who are struggling
Sheryl Sandberg and Adam Grant, Opinion contributors Published 7:43 a.m. ET Nov. 30, 2017 | Updated 7:21 a.m. ET Dec. 1, 2017

Facebook COO Sheryl Sanberg says she hopes her new book on grief will teach readers how to help others after a tragedy. USA TODAY

If you have a loved one who’s suffering, “Happy holidays!" can feel like a cruel joke. The most wonderful time of the year? Not for everyone.
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(Photo: Martin E. Klimek, USA TODAY)

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We’ve all been there: Someone we know is suffering, and we’re not sure what to do. In Hilary Weisfeld’s case, her daughter’s teacher had a 4-year-old girl with leukemia who was admitted to the hospital. They weren’t close friends; Hilary had never met the little girl.

Hilary went to a toy store, bought a stuffed animal, and sent an email: “I'm coming to the hospital with a package for your daughter. I don't want to invade your privacy or hers. If you don't feel like coming down I'll leave it at the front desk. No pressure.” The teacher replied immediately, inviting her up. As the girl unwrapped her new toy, the teacher thanked Hilary with tears in her eyes.

Although we all want to support others through hardship, knowing how to do that isn’t always intuitive. Every bookstore has a self-help section — but sometimes what we really need is a “help others” section.

More: Listen up Supreme Court: Warrantless tracking of smartphones violates our rights

More: After Weinstein, consider the Pence rule to protect your heart and marriage

The holidays are supposed to be a time of celebration — but if you’re dealing with illness, divorce, incarceration or grief, that festive spirit can feel like salt being poured on a wound. Holidays can make you painfully aware of the love, liberty or life you’ve lost.

If you have a loved one who’s suffering, phrases you’ve used a thousand times without a second thought —“Happy holidays! Season’s greetings!” — can feel like a cruel joke. The most wonderful time of the year? Not for everyone.

Many people are afraid to acknowledge others’ pain: They don’t want to bring it up. Only after Sheryl’s husband Dave died suddenly did we realize how ridiculous that is. You can’t remind her Dave is gone. She’s aware of that every day.

The elephant is always there. The best thing you can do is speak up instead of saying silent. But knowing what to say can be as hard as finding the courage to say something. For most of our lives, we’ve made four big mistakes.

First: When someone is in anguish, our instinct is to encourage them to think positive. “Time heals all wounds!” “Everything happens for a reason.” But after interviewing people who lost a spouse or child, psychologists found that the most unhelpful “help” came from those who urged them to cheer up and recover. Pressuring people to be happy is a surefire way to make them sad; feeling bad about feeling bad just makes us feel worse.

For bereaved parents and spouses, the most helpful help came from people who invited them to express their feelings. At The Dinner Party, young people who have lost spouses host an annual “All Feelings Welcome” potluck. As therapist Megan Devine says, “Some things cannot be fixed. They can only be carried.”

Second: We’ve tried to empathize by mentioning something similar we’ve encountered. Your brother is sick from chemo? I totally know how you feel — my cat was throwing up recently. Sociologists call this conversational narcissism: that moment when we shift the conversation to put ourselves in the spotlight. Odds are you don’t actually know how they feel. Even if you do, you should focus on their experience, not yours.

“When you’re faced with tragedy,” writer Tim Lawrence notes, “the most powerful thing you can do is acknowledge. Literally say the words: I acknowledge your pain. I’m here with you.”

Third: We’ve tried to help by offering advice. That turns out to be the other most unhelpful form of help. Go to the gym — sure, I’ll sweat off the grief! Come to the holiday party — yep, drinking eggnog will help me win custody of my kids.

More: Hijab Barbie: Perfect Christmas gift for non-Muslim parents who want to stick it to Trump

POLICING THE USA: A look at race, justice, media

We have some unsolicited advice: Don’t give unsolicited advice. Consider just admitting, “I wish I knew the right thing to say. I’m so sorry you’re going through this — but you will not go through it alone.”

And fourth: We’ve tried to show support by saying, “Let me know if there’s anything I can do.” We meant it, but it put the burden on others to know what they needed and feel comfortable asking. “Instead of offering ‘anything,' ” author Bruce Feiler recommends, “just do something.” Invite them over for a holiday dinner. Make a playlist of songs that aren’t about joy or snow. Drop off a home-cooked meal. As Hilary Weisfeld learned, you don’t have to be best friends since third grade to show up.

Hilary didn’t stop at visiting her daughter’s teacher in the hospital. She reached out later that week with another specific offer: “I think you need a delivery of really terrible magazines. Any preferences? If not, I'll just go rogue.”

“You have no idea how much your checking in has meant to us,” her daughter’s teacher replied.

When you’re at a loss for words, the best thing you can do is spring into action. Actions don’t just speak louder than words — they’re felt more deeply, too.

Sheryl Sandberg and Adam Grant are the authors of Option B: Facing Adversity, Building Resilience, and Finding Joy. To learn more about #OptionBThere for the holidays, visit optionb.org/holidays
social-skills  emotional-intelligence  psychology  grief 
9 weeks ago by enochko
(*) Stephanie Hurlburt on Twitter: "Examples of banned self deprecating comments. 🚫 "My project is..." - very small/basic/simple - not that good - a thing I wrote - just by a… https://t.co/o3FcBHMf25"
Stephanie Hurlburt Retweeted Stephanie Hurlburt
Half the women sending me blog posts do it with a self deprecating comment.

It's not hard to just write the title of blog post + link. Self deprecation is a shield. It's a "You can't hurt me by saying my work's bad, because I said it first."

And it will hurt your career. Stop.

Examples of banned self deprecating comments. 🚫

"My project is..."
- very small/basic/simple
- not that good
- a thing I wrote
- just by a newbie
- something I didn't spend a lot of time/effort on
- silly
- not that useful

Just state the topic and let others be the judge.
gender  conversation  career-promotions  social-skills 
10 weeks ago by ramitsethi
What to Do When a Personal Crisis Is Hurting Your Professional Life
What to Do When a Personal Crisis Is Hurting Your Professional Life
Amy Gallo
NOVEMBER 16, 2017
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ISSARA WILLENSKOMER/UNSPLASH
At some point, we all confront a stressful life event or personal crisis that threatens to distract us from work. Perhaps it’s tending to a sick family member, coping with your own illness, or dealing with a divorce. These are all incredibly tough situations to navigate personally — let alone professionally. Should you disclose what’s happening to your manager and colleagues? How do you ask for what you need, such as flexible hours or a reduced workload? And how do you know if you should take a leave of absence?

What the Experts Say
“This is life, and these things happen to everybody,” says Anne Kreamer, author of It’s Always Personal. But knowing you’re in good company is not necessarily a comfort, especially if you’re struggling to stay on top of your responsibilities at home and work. If you’ve reached the point where you say to yourself, “I can’t get my job done,” it may be time to ask for help, says Jane Dutton, a professor at the University of Michigan’s Ross School of Business and coauthor of Awakening Compassion at Work. Here’s some advice on how to navigate work when you’re having a personal crisis.

Decide what you need
First, take stock of the resources you have at hand “both inside and outside the organization” to help you through this crisis, Dutton says. Are there friends or family who might be able to pitch in? Do you have team members who might be able to cover some of your responsibilities in the short term? What you need may not be huge. “It might be as simple as leaving work early on Fridays for a month,” Dutton says. The key is to figure out what will help ease the pressure.

Consider how important privacy is to you
Before you ask for help, however, consider how much you’re comfortable sharing. “This has to be an individual choice,” Kreamer says. “There are many different reasons why people choose to maintain their privacy,” especially about illnesses that carry a stigma. Uncertainty about your standing in the organization is another reason to be afraid, she adds. Dutton agrees, noting that, in some cases, “it can be dangerous to disclose your situation.” She suggests assessing the risks with questions like: What kind of culture am I in? Are there formal procedures for handling this? Do I need to go to HR? Or are there people in my unit who can be helpful? Are they going to treat me humanely? Or do I need to think about how to protect myself?

It’s better to share if you feel OK doing so
If you do feel that it’s safe to share, it’s often better to do so. “We’ve been encouraged to keep the boundaries between private and professional distinct, but that’s not always helpful,” Kreamer says. In fact, research by Ashley Hardin, a professor at Washington University’s Olin Business School, shows that when you allow coworkers to discover more about your personal life, they are more motivated to meet your needs. “If the situation is interfering with your ability to complete your job, it’s likely that your coworkers may already realize something is amiss, and in that case you are better off letting them in on what is going on,” Hardin explains. You can also give permission to your close colleagues to share your circumstances with other coworkers if it is too difficult for you to tell them directly. “This type of indirect disclosure can open up a space for your teammates to brainstorm ways to help you,” Hardin adds.

Set boundaries
This doesn’t mean you need to sit down with everyone and explain your situation in agonizing detail. Set boundaries for yourself and for others. You can turn to close colleagues for the more personal conversations, but keep in mind that “most people don’t want to know every detail of your parent’s chemotherapy. They want to know the pertinent information and how it’s going to affect them,” Kreamer says. Also, it can be tough to answer lots of questions and rehash the details of a sad situation, so don’t be afraid to redirect the conversation back to work if a coworker continually inquires about the details. You might say: “Right now, it helps my sanity to stay focused on work. Is it OK with you if we talk about the project instead?”

Ask for specific help
“Ideally, when you share the news, your colleagues will say: ‘I’m going to do such-and-such for you. Are you cool with that?’” Kreamer says. But if your coworkers aren’t forthcoming about offering help, ask for it explicitly. And be thoughtful about how you frame your request. Research by Wayne Baker, a professor at the Ross School of Business, shows that how you frame your appeal strongly influences whether someone will agree to it. He recommends making the request specific and describing why the help is meaningful to you: We “often assume that the importance of a request is obvious, but it rarely is.” And as with any request you make at work, give a deadline. So you might say, “I’d love your help over the next two weeks while I’m out caring for my mother. Would you be able to complete the report we’ve been working on? It would free up my mind to focus on what I need to do at home.”

Approach your boss
It’s also a good idea to loop your boss into what’s happening, assuming you feel comfortable doing so. If you have a very close relationship, tell them first and brainstorm ideas for reducing or covering your workload. But, in most cases, Kreamer says, it’s best to talk to your manager when you already “have some notion of how you intend to handle the problem.” Run a tentative plan by your manager, outlining the time period you expect to be absent or working less, the colleagues who might step up for you, and whether you’ve already discussed that possibility with them. Then ask for your boss’s input.

Do what’s right for you
There is no right answer when handling a crisis situation. Some people might find comfort in coming in to work every day. Kreamer did that when she was dealing with three family deaths — her parents and a grandmother — within six months. “I was overwhelmed by the tsunami of death, and work was very much a solace for me,” she says. “Work is often an antidote, a space where you can forget about what’s happening and operate as a functioning adult rather than feeling helpless in the face of these events.” For others, it might be better to take an official leave of absence. “When you believe that you won’t be able to function at the caliber that your job requires of you, it may be better to remove yourself from that situation for a time to recharge your batteries,” Kreamer says. “When you push forward and don’t allow yourself to feel the grief, you don’t recover as quickly.” Facebook is leading the way in offering generous bereavement leave, in the wake of COO Sheryl Sandberg’s losing her husband, but not all companies offer paid leave, so there are financial and career implications to consider. Still, even a short leave — just a few weeks — might be enough time.

Principles to Remember

Do:

Determine what type of support you need — at home and at work.
Tell your colleagues what’s happening so that they feel compassion for your situation.
Make clear, specific requests of your coworkers and boss so that they know how they can help you.
Don’t:

Feel you have to tell everyone directly — it’s OK to ask close colleagues to explain to others what’s going on.
Share every detail of your situation; tell coworkers only the details that are pertinent to them.
Assume that it will be painful to continue working during this time — sometimes going to the office can be a comfort.
Case Study #1: Reassure coworkers and maintain boundaries
When Keisha Blair, cofounder of career resource platform Aspire-Canada, was 31, her husband passed away suddenly from a rare disease — eight weeks after she’d given birth to their second child.

At the time, she was managing a team of six policy analysts in the Canadian government. The immediate response from her boss and coworkers was caring. “They were very supportive during my time of grief,” she recalls. Although everyone had been expecting her back from maternity leave, they assured her that she could take off additional time should she need it, and she took them up on the offer, staying out 10 months.

But the situation was still challenging when she returned. “I could see that my story had really affected my colleagues,” she explains. On her first day back, “there was an outpouring of emotions; some cried openly in the office,” she recalls. And “many had questions about how the kids were coping, my support system at home, and how I was doing in the aftermath of such a sudden, unexpected death.”

Her response was intentionally measured. “I didn’t want to totally shut down the conversation, but in order to limit unnecessary chatter and maintain my own composure as a leader, I told colleagues that if they wanted to come talk they should feel free to do so in private. This way I could gauge how much a particular employee was affected and also manage my response,” she says.

She also made it clear that there were some things she wouldn’t talk about. These boundaries helped make sure these conversations didn’t intensify her grief. If employees needed additional help, she referred them to the Employee Assistance Program.

Looking back, Keisha is proud of how she handled … [more]
work  career  life  management  HR  social-skills 
10 weeks ago by enochko
1922: Why I Quit Being So Accommodating – Mike Cane’s xBlog
Canonical article on building respect by setting boundaries, really good
social-skills  writing 
11 weeks ago by ramitsethi
The Ultimate Guide to Social Skills - I Will Teach You To Be Rich
The art of talking to anyone. Good social skills guide with videos.
conversations  social-skills  socialising 
12 weeks ago by cd
Why we should all stop saying “I know exactly how you feel” – ideas.ted.com
Why we should all stop saying “I know exactly how you feel”

TED Guest Author
2 months ago

You don’t. And you’re also steering the focus away from someone who probably just wants to be heard. Here’s how to be a more considerate conversation partner, says radio host and writer Celeste Headlee.

A good friend of mine lost her dad some years back. I found her sitting alone outside our workplace, just staring at the horizon. She was absolutely distraught, and I didn’t know what to say to her. It’s so easy to say the wrong thing to someone who is grieving and vulnerable.

So I started talking about how I grew up without a father. I told her my dad had drowned in a submarine when I was only nine months old and I’d always mourned his loss, even though I’d never known him. I wanted her to realize that she wasn’t alone, that I’d been through something similar and I could understand how she felt.

But after I related this story, my friend snapped, “Okay, Celeste, you win. You never had a dad and I at least got to spend 30 years with mine. You had it worse. I guess I shouldn’t be so upset that my dad just died.”

I was stunned and mortified. “No, no, no,” I said, “that’s not what I’m saying at all. I just meant I know how you feel.”

And she answered, “No, Celeste, you don’t. You have no idea how I feel.”

Often subtle and unconscious, conversational narcissism is the desire to do most of the talking and to turn the focus of the exchange to yourself.
She walked away and I stood there feeling like a jerk. I had wanted to comfort her and, instead, I’d made her feel worse. When she began to share her raw emotions, I felt uncomfortable so I defaulted to a subject with which I was comfortable: myself. She wanted to talk about her father, to tell me about the kind of man he was. She wanted to share her cherished memories. Instead, I asked her to listen to my story.

From that day forward, I started to notice how often I responded to stories of loss and struggle with stories of my own experiences. My son would tell me about clashing with a kid in Boy Scouts, and I would talk about a girl I fell out with in college. When a coworker got laid off, I told her about how much I struggled to find a job after I had been laid off years earlier. But when I began to pay more attention, I realized the effect of sharing my experiences was never as I intended. What all of these people needed was for me to hear them and acknowledge what they were going through. Instead, I forced them to listen to me.

Sociologist Charles Derber describes this tendency as “conversational narcissism.” Often subtle and unconscious, it’s the desire to take over a conversation, to do most of the talking, and to turn the focus of the exchange to yourself. Derber writes that it “is the key manifestation of the dominant attention-getting psychology in America.”

He describes two kinds of responses in conversations: a shift response and a support response. The first shifts attention back to yourself, and the second supports the other person’s comment.

Example number 1:

The shift response

Mary: I’m so busy right now.

Tim: Me, too. I’m totally overwhelmed.

The support response

Mary: I’m so busy right now.

Tim: Why? What do you have to get done?

Example number 2:

The shift response

Karen: I need new shoes.

Mark: Me, too. These things are falling apart.

The support response

Karen: I need new shoes.

Mark: Oh yeah? What kind are you thinking about?

Shift responses are a hallmark of conversational narcissism — they help you turn the focus constantly back to yourself. But a support response encourages the other person to continue their story. It lets them know you’re listening and interested in hearing more.

We can craftily disguise our attempts to shift focus — we might start a sentence with a supportive remark and then follow up with a comment about ourselves.
The game of catch is often used as a metaphor for conversation. In an actual game of catch, you’re forced to take turns. But in conversation, we often find ways to resist giving someone else a turn. Sometimes, we use passive means to subtly grab control of the exchange.

This tug-of-war over attention is not always easy to track. We can very craftily disguise our attempts to shift focus. We might start a sentence with a supportive comment, and then follow up with a comment about ourselves. For instance, if a friend tells us they just got a promotion, we might respond by saying, “That’s great! Congratulations. I’m going to ask my boss for a promotion, too. I hope I get it.”

Such a response could be fine, as long as we allow the focus to shift back to the other person again. However, the healthy balance is lost when we repeatedly shine the attention back on ourselves.

While reciprocity is an important part of any meaningful conversation, the truth is shifting the attention to our own experiences is completely natural. Modern humans are hardwired to talk about themselves more than any other topic. One study found that “most social conversation time is devoted to statements about the speaker’s own emotional experiences and/or relationships, or those of third parties not present.”

The insula, an area of the brain deep inside the cerebral cortex, takes in the information that people tell us and then tries to find a relevant experience in our memory banks that can give context to the information. It’s mostly helpful: the brain is trying to make sense of what we hear and see. Subconsciously, we find similar experiences and add them to what’s happening at the moment, and then the whole package of information is sent to the limbic regions, the part of the brain just below the cerebrum. That’s where some trouble can arise — instead of helping us better understand someone else’s experience, our own experiences can distort our perceptions of what the other person is saying or experiencing.

The more comfortable you are, the more difficult it is to empathize with the suffering of another.
A study from the Max Planck Institute for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences suggests that our egos distort our perception of our empathy. When participants watched a video of maggots in a group setting, they could understand that other people might be repulsed by it. But if one person was shown pictures of puppies while the others were shown the maggot video, the puppy viewer generally underestimated the rest of the group’s negative reaction to the maggots.

Study author Dr. Tania Singer observed, “The participants who were feeling good themselves assessed their partners’ negative experiences as less severe than they actually were. In contrast, those who had just had an unpleasant experience assessed their partners’ good experience less positively.” In other words, we tend to use our own feelings to determine how others feel.

Here’s how that translates to your daily conversations: Let’s say you and a friend are both laid off at the same time by the same company. In that case, using your feelings as a measure of your friend’s feelings may be fairly accurate because you’re experiencing the same event. But what if you’re having a great day and you meet a friend who was just laid off? Without knowing it, you might judge how your friend is feeling against your good mood. She’ll say, “This is awful. I’m so worried that I feel sick to my stomach.” You’d respond, “Don’t worry, you’ll be okay. I was laid off six years ago and everything turned out fine.” The more comfortable you are, the more difficult it is to empathize with the suffering of another.

It took me years to realize I was much better at the game of catch than I was at its conversational equivalent. Now I try to be more aware of my instinct to share stories and talk about myself. I try to ask questions that encourage the other person to continue. I’ve also made a conscious effort to listen more and talk less.

Recently, I had a long conversation with a friend who was going through a divorce. We spent almost 40 minutes on the phone, and I barely said a word. At the end of our call, she said, “Thank you for your advice. You’ve really helped me work some things out.”

The truth is, I hadn’t offered any advice. Most of what I said was a version of “That sounds tough. I’m sorry this is happening to you.” She didn’t need advice or stories from me. She just needed to be heard.

Excerpted with permission from the new book We Need to Talk: How to Have Conversations That Matter by Celeste Headlee. Published by Harper Wave, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers. © 2017 Celeste Headlee.
psychology  emotional-intelligence  social-skills 
november 2017 by enochko
Online Social Skills Guide - Improve Your Social Skills
Free basic guidebook on many social topics. Amazon book contains advanced detailed version.
social-skills  socialising 
november 2017 by cd
Conversation Aid
Develop conversation skills with these short posts with mindset hacks.
conversations  social-skills  socialising 
november 2017 by cd

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