The Knowledge Project with Shane Parrish

The Dying Art of Conversation

1:12:35 | Feb 5th

4 echoes

Speaker, author and radio journalist Celeste Headlee has had decades of experience fine tuning the recipe for engaging and rewarding conversation. She shares some tips to help us instantly improve our conversational skills and meaningfully connect wi...Show More


mmFeb 20th

Great thoughtful conversation for how to have great thoughtful conversations.

repeatRe-echoed by mm

hiradFeb 17th

Fantastic episode on how to listen well and have good conversations.

mmFeb 24th

Thanks for echoing this @hirad! I really enjoyed it this episode. Celeste Headlee is definitely a very talented journalist and interviewer. I appreciated the very pragmatic tips she offered. Specifically enjoyed her calling out the things we commonly do without realizing that we shouldn't do, e.g. conversational narcissism or "showing empathy" to someone else's problem by saying that we "understand" when we don't. Also, I've heard from elsewhere that practicing the "give and take method" of improv is a good way to improve conversation. What were some of your big takeaways?

hiradFeb 24th

The thing that stood out the most to me was the analogy with a game of catch. That’s such a good image to think about how to engage in conversation. The conversational narcissism thing was eye opening too. I’m definitely guilty of that.

mmFeb 24th

@hirad Yes! Agreed with the game of catch analog. Maybe I missed it in the episode, but what if the person doesn’t “play catch” with you and you keep trying to throw the conversation ball to them but they don’t throw it back? You know that feeling when you feel like you’re trying to keep the conversation going, but it feels like you’re doing all the work to do that? I try to ask people questions about themselves but maybe you have better tricks? Or maybe I’m playing the game of catch wrong to begin with in those conversations!