There’s a good reason why some of my friends call me a people collector.
I seem to have this interesting little habit of leaving the house and talking to anything that breathes. It’s probably more like a genetic condition passed on to me through my father called ‘The Gift of the Gab.’
New Best Friend Adventure
It all began when I accidentally borrowed a dog and took ‘the Duke’ for a walk in the woods armed with my new Nikon D90 camera. I was in search of what was described to me as an ‘enchanted forest’. Of course, I didn’t find it…I can only dream…but I was fortunate enough to find something else – a new best friend. Leslie from Phoenix, Arizona who loves dogs and owned the very same camera in my possession.
An hour later, we were fast friends.
We connected later that night for food and a tour of the city. Kindred spirits that we were, we went traveling for days in the wilds of British Columbia – and we’ve remained good friends ever since.
All it took was a couple of things in common [dogs + camera] and the art of conversation.
How to Win Friends & Influence People
I’m a big fan of Dale Carnegie – he had a very down-to-earth way about him that won the admiration of everyone he met. I read his book ‘How to Win Friends & Influence People’ (1936) in my early 20’s and his words of advice left an indelible mark.
Dale’s advice that really stood out for me was:
- Become genuinely interested in other people.
- Remember that a person’s name is to that person the sweetest and most important sound in any language.
- Be a good listener. Encourage others to talk about themselves.
- Talk in terms of the other person’s interests.
- Make the other person feel important – and do it sincerely.
- If you are wrong, admit it quickly and emphatically.
- Try honestly to see things from the other person’s point of view.
- Let the other person do a great deal of the talking.
But more than that – I’ve read A LOT of books on networking and etiquette and communication skills – you name it. There is a lot of overlap – which is good – these are the things you want to remember.
Why You Should Learn the Art of Conversation?
- With increased social skills, you will notice that you can talk to anyone.
- You’ll notice your social circle expanding effortlessly.
- You’ll be able to connect with others at a deeper level.
- It will open doors for you – filled with possibility and opportunity.
- You will feel more confident, feeling less shy and releasing a lot of social fears.
- You can easily attract more people into your world – both personally and professionally.
What I got out of it
Whenever I meet somebody new, I always look at it as an opening into new worlds of possibility. Through them, I rediscover the world we live in – and who I am as a person. [/quote-float]Through my new friend Leslie, I learned a lot about how the human brain works – seeing as she is a brain doctor and all. In fact, I found out her job is so specialized that there is only two people in the entire USA who do it. That’s pretty cool. I also learned a lot about Phoenix, Arizona and the people that live there. I learned about her travels, the people in her life, what it’s like working in a hospital, and a lot about her dog. And of course, being two single gals, we talked a lot about men. How could we not? We’re women…it’s what we do.
But all in all, without conversation skills I would never have met such an amazing and talented woman. I leave myself open and sometimes I find that I’ve accidentally meandered into a different type of enchanted forest. I’ve always met people here in my city – but Leslie was the first I met from out of the country. One day (hopefully soon), an adventure will lead me to Phoenix, Arizona (Leslie thinks I should check out the vortexes in Sedona) where we’ll be able to connect in her country of origin.
© Monthly Adventure, Patricia Taylor, September 2009