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10 ways to have a great conversation by Celeste Headlee

Celeste, like me, loves the beautiful creatures people are. And she believes that with each interaction, this gift that we are, has the power to change us...amaze us. To truly revel in these 'gems', here are 10 ways to fully enhance our experiences in conversing with people.

1.Be present.

Isn't that the gospel truth? We are in a conversation and we are somewhere else? The one conversation we always reach other places is in Salat! What happens? We loose track of our recitation, how many rakaât we've done and feel really poorly after we've completed. Loosing a lot of barakah in the process. Be in the conversation. Now.
2. and 4. Empty your mind and go with the flow

You are present, then stop filling your mind with stuff to say, preempting the conversation or thinking of a better thing to say (you think). Empty your mind and let the conversation carry you. Its a fuller richer truer experience if you are willing to let it guide.

3. Easy open ended questions

You're starting a conversation? Allow the participation of others with open ended questions that welcome explanation and free flow. So ask about themselves, their family and discuss like matters from these findings.

5. Say you don't know

Don't get carried away in the conversation and try to monopolize it. Be honest and say you don't know. Honesty keeps the conversation clean and free of your trying to remember stuff you didn't mean or out do yourself or any one else.

6. Don't equate your experience with others:

Simple. Its not about you.
˜My Dad died."
"O dear, I remember the time my Dad died"
Conversation fades.

7. Stay out of details

Part of keeping clean conversation is to speak straight to the point and not 'cream' your conversation. Reminds me of the etiquette of speaking in our great deen and from the best of mankind. Do not be superfluous. Stay out of details. Attended a meeting. We don't need to know in whose car, what you wore and the name of your perfume. You're killing me? Seriously?

8. Listen

This should be No 1 and No 10 all at once. If your mouth is open, you are not learning. There's a reason we have two ears and one mouth. No one ever listened himself out of a job. Listen. Active listening. Shut out the noise. Listen to the unspoken inflections and nuances. Repeat stuff you heard for emphasis and to ensure you got it right if need be. You can't be present, if you are not listening.

9 and 10. Do not repeat yourself and be brief
˜Did I mention I had a little boy?" Yes! you did. We heard! It shows you're waffling, really are not paying attention to the conversation or it's all about you.

And on being brief, a good conversation is like a miniskirt; short enough to retain interest, but long enough to cover the subject.
So, go out, talk to people, listen to people,Celeste says. And, most importantly, be prepared to be amazed.


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10 ways to have a great conversation by Celeste Headlee:

Celeste, like me, loves the beautiful creatu...

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