An invitation to explore & embrace lifechats
At its simplest, a lifechat is the act of creating a safe, curiosity-filled space to intentionally ask thoughtful questions, to listen intently to the responses, and to share your truth in return. Lifechats happen with strangers never to be seen again, old friends you can’t get rid of even if you tried, and everyone in between. The medium doesn’t matter—the approach is all that does. The hope is one of connection that reminds us of who we are, that challenges us to think differently, and that leaves us better for doing both.
For when you know you want to start but don’t know how. These lifechat starters are to help facilitate deeper connections with others through themed questions. Consider them a starting point.
Discuss learning styles, big teachers in your life (however you interpret that), and more.
Discuss the last thing you celebrated, what you struggle to celebrate, and more.
Discuss what comfort means to you, what you do to comfort others, and more.
Discuss your first fear you ever faced, the role fear plays in your life, and more.
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An approach to conversations that centers on curiosity & connecting eventually changing your approach to everything else.
In the 3rd grade, I found myself playing on the monkey bars at my elementary school with a 5th grader talking about what felt like forbidden topics of the soul: loneliness, insecurities, pain, death, and more. It set me alive in a way I hadn’t felt before. It became our secret though but I never could understand why it needed to be so hidden when it felt so real and important. As I grew older, I pushed back against this narrative of vulnerability and truth-seeking as shameful using the term “lifechat” to invite others into this deeper space I found myself cultivating. The term stuck and now I want to share it with you.
Quotes that inspire me to lifechat
“In general, people are not drawn to perfection in others. People are drawn to shared interests, shared problems, and an individual’s life energy. Humans connect with humans. Hiding one’s humanity and trying to project an image of perfection makes a person vague, slippery, lifeless, and uninteresting.”
Mary Lou Kownacki
“There isn’t anyone you couldn’t love once you’ve heard their story.“
Carl R. Rogers
“People are just as wonderful as sunsets if you let them be. When I look at a sunset, I don’t find myself saying, “Soften the orange a bit on the right hand corner.” I don’t try to control a sunset. I watch with awe as it unfolds.”
“I crave the ones who’ve seen confusion and known struggle, who have pulled themselves up from the shackles of heartache and strife, disappointment and darkness, exhaustion and drain and have risen with a heart as open and unwaveringly wide as the ocean itself. Give me those people. The brave, the vulnerable, the wise, the ones who care for a world, and how to better it along with themselves. To know their ability in making waves, in shifting patterns with tides and in creating change. Let us become that open ocean. And make it rise. “
“So walk across the street, or drive across town, or fly across the country, but don’t let really intimate loving friendships become the last item on a long to-do list. Good friendships are like breakfast. You think you’re too busy to eat breakfast, but then you find yourself exhausted and cranky halfway through the day, and discover that your attempt to save time totally backfired. In the same way, you can try to go it alone because you don’t have time or because your house is too messy to have people over, or because making new friends is like the very worst parts of dating. But halfway through a hard day or a hard week, you’ll realize in a flash that you’re breathtakingly lonely, and that the Christmas cards aren’t much company. Get up, make a phone call, buy a cheap ticket, open your front door. Because there really is nothing like good friends, like the sounds of their laughter and the tones of their voices and the things they teach us in the quietest, smallest moments.”
“I have the deepest affection for intellectual conversations. The ability to just sit and talk. About love, about life, about anything, about everything. To sit under the moon with all the time in the world, the full-speed train that is our lives slowing to a crawl. Bound by no obligations, barred by no human limitations. To speak without regret or fear of consequence. To talk for hours and about what’s really important in life.”