Story of your life. 1. Life is a conversation

Life is a conversation. Buying groceries. Asking for directions. Begging your mom to stay longer at a friend’s place. Convincing a coach that you are worth being on the first team. Flirting with your wife-to-be on the very first date. Joking with the best buddies over a beer. Pitching a 100 euros raise to your manager. Closing a 100M euros deal with investors. You can’t make it through alone. Everything you’ll ever need or would like to achieve requires communication and collaboration with others.

Think about this for a moment.

I’m not saying conversations are an essential part of your life. The claim is your life is defined by conversations. And we need to talk about this.

There are two types of conversations in life: scripted and free-play. Buying groceries would normally be a scripted one. Everyone knows their roles. There is almost no need for words. The outcome is pre-aligned: you are taking bread and butter, and you are paying hard-earned money.
– Hello.
– Hello.
– That’s what I want.
– That’s what you need to pay.
– This is it.
– You are free to go.
– Have a nice day.
– Nice day to you too.

Free-play conversations are somewhat different. It’s a moment of choice, your tipping point. And it’s 100% on you. The better you are, the closer will be the desired result.
– Hey boss, I need a rise.
– Are you kidding me?!
– I’m certain I deserve it…
– And I’m certain you are a greedy bastard. You are fired.
– Nice day to you too.
– You are free to go.

It’s almost obvious, but we rarely consider life through this lens. Those are my insights.

The first thing that surprises me is how scripted our existence is. We tend to think of ourselves as the most advanced creatures in the Universe. Our souls are so deep, and our feelings are so complicated, that no one can ever get us. Still, we spend our days participating in the shittiest play ever written: following a predictable flow with zero plot twist and no intention to change anything.

The second thought here is how often the confusion between scripted and free-play conversations. We are following social scenarios while we are meant to deliver our most remarkable performance. The outcome is always mediocracy.

Finally, the third observation. Since free-play conversations define our life, we should probably care more about them and master our conversation skills — the same way we train our bodies and minds.

As a marketing strategist, I’ve spent years studying communications: researching theory, and applying findings into practice for some prominent brands. This series of posts is my attempt to project that professional knowledge to a personal level: how to handle free-play conversations, master your story and become the author of your own life.

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