We often rush from place to place. Our main forms of entertainment involve watching a computer or tv screen. Meals are eaten on the run and shorthand messages sent via email. It seems as though our modern lifestyles have left little time for real communication.

This is why the third step on the path to happiness is to “ Take time to talk – have an hour-long conversation with a loved one each week.” Think back to the last time you sat down and had an in-depth talk with a friend or loved-one. How long has it been? Did you notice a greater sense of belonging and connection?

Conversation shapes our culture. It opens us to seeing a bigger picture. We learn about others and learn more about ourselves, as well. Many of the greatest inventions began with ideas exchanged in conversation. A good “heart to heart” gets the creative juices flowing.

A conversation also involves the art of listening. Focused in the present moment, we can give our complete attention to whomever we are speaking with. The relationship becomes deeper and we build trust and respect.

A good conversation is like a dance. It involves a modicum of grace. You must know when to move forward and when to pause for your partner. Have you noticed a sense of “flow” in your conversations? During your next converstion, watch how the energies move. Start to become aware of the dance.

This week, take the time to have a real conversation. Ask a friend or loved one to join you for a cup of tea or a walk through the park. Relax and enjoy where the conversation takes you.

Creating a positive future begins in human conversation. The simplest and most powerful investment any member of a community or an organization may make in renewal is to begin talking with other people as though the answers mattered.”

Adapted from: “Who Will Tell the People” by William Greider

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