We might not all be great fiction writers but we certainly have the capacity to make up many stories, in our heads, of events that haven’t happened yet.
We can create some amazing stories on where things might go with a particular situation, what other people do or think, and what happens next based on that.
We spend sleepless nights working through the scenarios. But in our “choose your own adventure” story, how many times does it really come true? How many times do we get the outcome we’ve spent time worrying about?
We get sucked into these rabbit holes for many reasons but one critical factor we often miss is the gap in information.
We fail to ask questions to inform us. The questions might be too difficult or awkward so we avoid them.
Instead of knowing the answers upfront, we defer to waiting, hoping, and fantasizing.
We go into story mode.
That’s easier than the alternative. But harder on us, mentally.
Remove the worrying. Remove the doubt. Remove the 20 questions inside our heads.
Ask that upfront. Be direct. Be transparent.
Whatever is going to happen is going to happen anyway.
Instead of waiting until the cliffhanger at the end of this story, we might as well change the narrative starting out.
Daniel Stillman designs conversations for a living and insists that you do, too. He works with organizations like Google, Nike, and Visa to help them frame and sustain productive dialog, deepen their facilitation skills, and coach them through the innovation process. He also hosts The Conversation Factory podcast where he interviews leaders, changemakers, and innovators on how they design the conversations in their work and lives.
EPISODE 207: Founder and CEO of the Conversationalist
Episode 207 brings back former guest and the Founder and CEO of the Conversationalist, Sophie Beren. We explore a lot of deep topics around difficult conversations and how to be more open to others’ viewpoints and ideas even if they don’t align with ours.
Sophie Beren is a unifier from Wichita, Kansas. She is the Founder and CEO of The Conversationalist, a non-partisan educational platform empowering Gen Z to break out of their echo chambers, have difficult conversations, and unify the world. Her community of over 15,000 young people is committed to coming together, across differences, through “POVz” the first-ever Gen Z Talk Show airing in 2022, and through their digital network located on the Geneva app.
Sophie was recently named “25 Under 25” by Social Entrepreneur’s Magazine and “21 Women Entrepreneurs to Watch in 2021.” Her social impact journey began at The University of Pennsylvania where she received her Bachelor’s Degree in Communications and Music, and her Master’s Degree in Nonprofit Leadership.
Sophie’s work, featured in Forbes, Entrepreneur Magazine, and even on a billboard in Times Square, has proven to be the antidote to the polarization we see in our country today. Beren will continue to unify the next generation, one conversation at a time.