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The Art of Conversation: Change Your Life with Confident Communication

Book Description

Good conversation is at the heart of networking, meetings, interviews, negotiations and raising your profile. It can ease your way in work, enabling you to build alliances, create strong relationships with staff, bosses and clients, succeed at interviews, motivate and inspire.

But conversation is something most of us were never taught! We learn to speak as babies, but how conversation actually works is something most of us pick up only haphazardly, and many have yet to learn. Why is it some of us are stuck for words, but others blabber or can't stop? What is it that some people have naturally which enables them to converse comfortably and easily, to engage people and build better relationships?

The Art of Conversation will show you step by step how to converse skillfully and enjoyably with other people, at home, at work, on the phone and in the street- even if you're daunted now, discover the difference good conversation can make in every aspect of your life. Learn to:

  • Overcome the most common block to good conversation- fear; find out how to break the silence and keep the conversation going

  • Understand the different types of conversation and how they work- which topics and language are suitable for the occasion

  • Learn simple methods for being heard and understood, including speaking clearly and audibly, listening well and using non-verbal communication

  • Find out how to hold a conversation in tricky situations, including how to disagree, how to speak to those in authority and people you find difficult

  • Use conversation to form relationships, improve friendships, make the sale, chat people up, to learn, influence and persuade.

  • Table of Contents

    1. Endorsements
    2. Title page
    3. Copyright page
    4. Preface
    5. Acknowledgements
    6. Introduction
    7. Part One: Introducing Conversation
      1. 1: The Dance of Conversation
        1. 1.1    A Dance for Two
        2. 1.2    The Traditional “Conversationalist”
        3. 1.3    What's Conversation for?
      2. 2: Connecting Is What Matters Most
        1. 2.1    Conversational Drains
        2. 2.2    Finding common Ground
        3. 2.3    Finding a Common Language
        4. 2.4    Non-Verbal Connection
        5. 2.5    Energetic Connection
        6. 2.6    Flexibility
      3. 3: Getting in the Right State
        1. 3.1    Managing Your State
        2. 3.2    Collecting Positive States
        3. 3.3    Staying Present and Aware
        4. 3.4    Curiosity
        5. 3.5    Trusting Yourself and Others
      4. 4: Getting a Conversation Going – the Basics
        1. 4.1    Breaking the Silence
        2. 4.2    Keeping the Conversation Going
        3. 4.3    Stories
      5. 5: Listening
        1. 5.1    How Well Do You Listen?
        2. 5.2    What Can Happen Instead of Listening
        3. 5.3    How to Listen Well
        4. 5.4    Freeing Yourself to Listen
        5. 5.5    Deep Listening
    8. Part Two: The Power of Conversation
      1. 6: Influencing a Conversation
        1. 6.1    Know Your Intention
        2. 6.2    Leading Through Connection
        3. 6.3    Creating Positive Movement
        4. 6.4    Influence Can Be as Gentle as a Story
      2. 7: Different Kinds of Conversation
        1. 7.1    Thing Talk
        2. 7.2    Action Talk
        3. 7.3    Head Talk
        4. 7.4    Heart Talk
        5. 7.5    Soul Talk
        6. 7.6    Progressing Through Talk-Types
      3. 8: Expressing Yourself
        1. 8.1    Expressing You – Voice
        2. 8.2    Expressing You – Body Language
        3. 8.3    Expressing You – Your Emotions
        4. 8.4    Expressing the Real You
    9. Part Three: Sailing Through Tricky Waters
      1. 9: What to Do If You're Stuck
        1. 9.1    Find a Positive State of Mind
        2. 9.2    Stop Faking It
        3. 9.3    Slow Down
        4. 9.4    Know the Rules of the Game
        5. 9.5    Being Flexible
      2. 10: Oiling the Wheels
        1. 10.1    Comment on What You've Already Heard
        2. 10.2    Encouraging Nods and Grunts
      3. 11: Role Playing
      4. 12: Spotting the Games People Play
        1. 12.1    The Status Game
        2. 12.2    The Manipulation Game
        3. 12.3    Old Games
        4. 12.4    Naming the Game
      5. 13: Enjoying Disagreement
      6. 14: Confrontation
        1. 14.1    Handling Feelings with Skill
        2. 14.2    Checking Your Assumptions
        3. 14.3    Taking the Initiative
    10. Part Four: Creative Conversations
      1. 15: Changing the World One Conversation at a Time
        1. 15.1    Scientific Advances
        2. 15.2    Political Change
        3. 15.3    Voice of the People
        4. 15.4    One Personal Conversation at a Time
    11. About the Author
    12. Image Credits
    13. Index
    14. End User License Agreement