- Family and Parenting
Become a Better Conversationalist
A conversationalist is one who converses a great deal, who exchanges thoughts and opinions in speech or who excels in conversation (oral exchange of sentiments, observations, or ideas). In order to become a conversationalist an exchange is being given; if not it is a monologue. A prolonged talk or discourse by a single speaker, especially one dominating or monopolizing a conversation.
I love family activities since it is an important event where informal, true, deep education and discipline is taking place. Family members will seek after our true being and we become models of what we expect as an acceptable behavior from our spiritual or moral values.
The exchange of ideas, thoughts, opinions, sentiments, and observations that take place in a conversation on points in either of the general areas like: politics, religion, or moral values. In order to become healthy, pleasant, active, and interesting we should follow the golden rule that is based on respect.
If you are short on themes, or your missing some knowledge in certain themes; all you need to do is start reading... Get information about how things are, about history, politics, or God. You don't need to be an expert in everything, but if you do want to be a conversationalist, then you need to get some 'input' into your brain. Sounds nice, doesn't it?
Advice for conversationalists
Ensure yourself on what is going in the world. Read up on current events. Reading the newspaper and browsing interesting stories and information as well as watching a little bit of TV or listening to radio shows; benefits your speech skills and your intellect.
Some advice that have been offered are:
- To speak with clarity and purpose.
- Have confidence in oneself.
- Be relaxed and smile, not forcing laughter.
- Ask questions, avoiding drilling for information.
- Allow pauses between questions.
- Focus on the other person, find out their interests.
- Remember the small details about people you know and bring these up again.
- Listen without interrupting and never talk over the other person (Wait your turn).
- Listen carefully and relate your own experience (answer even if they don't ask).
- Be prepared to "agree to disagree".
- Consider your response and focusing more on areas of mutual support.
- If a conversation isn't going well, it might not be your fault.
- Common sense is required to know when the conversation is over by simply changing the topic to something less deep or demanding is a wiser option.
- Allow answers of questions to lead to a deeper conversation.
Questions that generate conversations:
- What are the problems in the world today that you wish you could do something about?
- Does equality mean everyone has to be the same?
- What is the biggest way someone has made a positive difference in your life?
- What stresses you out most? How do you deal with it?
- What is the most important quality you look for in a friend?
- What is the one thing that worries you the most about your future?
- What does it take to be a leader? Do you think you are a leader? Who do you think is a good leader?
- When you die and people are talking about your life, what do you hope they say about you?
- What two questions do you have about your family history?
- What activities do you do to make the world a better place?
Remarkable activities for oral skill development:
- Hold an annual neighborhood book swap. Ask neighbors to donate books they've already read, and invite everyone to come and find new books.
- Start a short neighborhood newsletter to share stories and triumphs of neighbors of all ages.
- Distribute a list to area students of neighbors that are available to help in homework by their expertise area.
- Stretch a child's thinking abilities by visiting places where the place provides for experiences of sounds, sights, tastes, textures, and smell, such as: a bird sanctuary, a candy manufacturer, or a concert. Maria Montessori quoted: "We cannot create observers by saying 'observe', but by giving them the power and the means for this observation and these means are procured through education of the senses.
- Share customs and rituals from your own background. Invite kids to help craft a project or a meal that highlights one of your cultural traditions.
- Invite youngsters to join you in doing a certain activity each season, such as picking strawberries, planting a garden, finding the biggest pumpkin, or singing holidays songs.
- Make a book with youngsters. Cut out magazine illustrations for pictures. Write a fictional story and include the child and yourself as the main characters.
Ten tips for better conversations
The Bible is the Word of God where He has given us the way to live, in Matthew 7:12 it is written: “So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets.” We can not obligate anyone to respect others but we could give advice and try to follow them ourselves. We need to learn to have good communication. We need to have better communication with everybody. Conversations should flow for better understanding.
I agree with Stephen R. Covey's quote: "Strength lies in differences, not in similarities". The thing is to learn how to deal with diversity when we are listeners as well as speakers.
Blessings to all!
© Maria Magdalena Ruiz O'Farrill
© 2012 Maria Magdalena Ruiz O'Farrill