Types of Conversations

We all have conversations all day long. At home, we start a conversation with our family about what to eat for breakfast, what to do in the evening and who is doing what, when and where. At work, we have conversations about what the priorities are for today and what needs to be done. Over lunch, we have a conversation about what is happening in the world.

Whatever we talk about, whoever we talk to, we can classify our conversation into three categories.

  • What happened conversation
  • What you think conversation
  • What you feel conversation

The most common conversation is the ‘what happened conversation.’ We make ourselves busy fussing about what happened, how it happened, who did it and giving our interpretation on what’s already happened. This is the safest type of conversation. We can be anonymous and hide behind facts and don’t need to reveal our thoughts and feelings.

When we are with people who we have a deeper relationship with than social acquaintances, we share what we think. Initially, we might share only thoughts that our listeners are likely to agree with or accept. Later as the relationship deepens we may feel comfortable sharing thoughts that are different from others and feel proud of our thoughts.

Sharing feelings is challenging. With the right people, it can create strong bonds. With the wrong people, it can be our vulnerability. That’s why we are selective about who we share our feelings with.

Have you ever categorized people around you based on what type of conversation you have with them? You will be surprised. We spend most of our time having ‘what happened conversations.’ If you want to deepen the relationship, start venturing into thought and feeling conversations.