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10 Ways to Have a Better Conversation
When having a conversation, how much are we truly listening? Often, we listen with the intent to reply, not to understand, says Celeste Headlee, writer and radio host. Wisdom abounds on how to appear engaged, but little of it focuses on how to actually take in what the other person is saying. In this insightful TED talk, Headlee shares 10 practical tips on how to have better conversations, from keeping it brief to going with the flow. According to Headlee, even if you just pick one to master, your conversations will begin to improve dramatically.
Video from KarmaTube
Lek Chailert of Elephant Nature Park
What people are exposed to early in their lives can have an impact on their future endeavors. Sangduen “Lek” Chailert grew up with a love of animals, to the point where she was ridiculed for spending time with them. When she was 16, she saw elephants being abused at a logging camp, and she felt compelled to change the way humans and animals interact with each other. She came to the realization that elephants have a right to be on this planet and to not be exploited for human entertainment or profit. Lek founded the Elephant Nature Park in 1996, where elephants live safe and free. Lek employs some people who once abused these beautiful animals and have learned by her example how to care for them with appreciation and respect.
The Soccer Grannies of South Africa
When many people think of grandmothers, they think of old women who knit, bake cookies, and don’t do much else outside the home. However, in South Africa, many grandmothers are the sole caregivers of grandchildren whose parents have passed away from HIV/AIDS. Women in South Africa do not play soccer, but a group of women in Limpopo known as the “Vhakegula Vhakegula,” or the “grannies grannies,” is forging new ground. The Vhakegula Vhakegula play soccer twice a week, primarily for exercise. In the process they also receive peace of mind, new friendships, joy and happiness. Many of them view this exercise as their medicine, helping them to avoid getting sick. The exercise has also helped many of the women overcome medical conditions that they had before playing soccer, including difficulty sleeping through the night. The benefits are seen in their smiles, shared singing, and in the enthusiasm with which they participate in this life affirming activity.
Paint the World
There is no better time to paint the world with joy than today, Blake Grigsby reminds us in this inspiring video. In a time when we are surrounded with horrific headlines, Blake encourages us to bring color to “this bleached landscape” with simple acts of kindness. Choose joy everyday! Smile at strangers, tell people you love them and share compliments. These small acts of generosity ripple outward endlessly and revitalize our world.
The Nomadic Community Gardens
In big cities, the streets that people live on are “avenues of anonymity.” Modern metropolises breed isolation and tend to alienate people from one another. Nomadic Community Gardens offers a solution for two common problems at once–utilizing empty space in a city and bringing its citizens together. A community garden leads people to learn and grow together. Where once there was chaos, violence, and despair, there is now peace, harmony, and togetherness.
Video from KarmaTube
Three Lessons of Revolutionary Love in a Time of Rage
“Revolutionary love is the choice to enter into labor for others who do not look like us, for our opponents who hurt us and for ourselves. In this era of enormous rage, when the fires are burning all around us,…revolutionary love is the call of our times.” In this TEDWomen 2017 talk, Valarie Kaur gives us the antidote to rising nationalism, polarization and hate. In her journey from the birthing room to murder site, Kaur shows us how the choice to love is a force for justice: see no stranger, tend the wound of those around us and who have done us harm, breathe together as we push together in our work in the world.
Kate Raworth: A healthy economy should be designed to thrive, not grow