Tag Archives: conversation

Five Minute Friday: Beautiful

The most beautiful thing in the world is the relationships we have with our spouses or partners, our family and our friends. Relationships are built on the things we do for one another and the things we say to one another.

a round table with formal place settings for 4, in the woods, next to a blue lake

Our relationships are built on the things we do for one another and the things we say to one another.

Each conversation solidifies our relationship and makes it more meaningful. Each time we’re able to do for each other what is needed, our relationship is made more secure because of the commitment we expressed and the unconditional love we’ve shown.  Continue reading

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The Art of Comforting Someone in Mourning

When someone dies, we often hear ourselves promising to visit or call a person in mourning in the days or weeks following the death and funeral. Sometimes our own promise fosters in us feelings of panic. What do we say? What do we do?

textured gold and silver relief of woman comforting man, from the back.

We can give immense comfort simply through our compassionate presence and our unconditional listening.

Relax. I’ll tell you a secret. There is an art to bringing comfort to those who are in  mourning. That art lies in our ability to listen attentively and compassionately to what they want to say. In other words, when in doubt about what to say, switch from talking to listening. Chances are good that a person who lost a loved one recently needs the gift of unconditional listening more than anything else. Continue reading

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Don’t Be a Know-It-All

When we’re used to being the one in charge, the one who makes the decisions and directs others to action, it can be easy to fall into the trap of thinking we know it all.

2 dozen geese on a fall pond, one is flapping its wings and squawking, while the others calmly ignore him

The know-it-all is so busy trying to impress others with his knowledge that he fails to recognize that while everyone can hear him, no one is listening to him.

Once caught in that trap, we can think we have nothing to learn from anyone else, and that everyone else could benefit from our knowledge.

At a dinner party a few months ago, I had the painful experience of watching this know-it-all scenario play out. It was a small, casual gathering of old friends and newcomers. Partway through the evening, someone posed a question to an expert with multiple degrees in an area of highly specialized science. Very quickly, someone else jumped into the conversation. This second person, we had learned earlier in the evening, is an accomplished professional with an impressive career. But it became clear very quickly he had only limited knowledge in this area of science. Continue reading

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