Conversations with purpose make us happier. I knew science would support me eventually, conversations with purpose certainly make me happy. There’s nothing I like more than a chat about stuff that matters with one or more people who are really present and engaged. Researchers say that “the happy life is social rather than solitary and conversationally deep rather than superficial”
The article also uses one of my favourite quotes from Socrates “the unexamined life is not worth living”. Now before you say ‘too much navel gazing’ and click elsewhere this doesn’t mean we need to spend hours pondering every nuance of the deep mysteries of life and picking apart our every experience. While the authors suggest that deep conversations actually make people happier and instill a sense of meaning in the interaction partners, the definition of what makes a substantive conversation is individual. It could be a chat about the state of our health system, your upcoming mortgage payment or the world shortage of bees.
It feels like I’m hearing from every direction that people are seeking more meaningful connection. The internet gives us so much information instantly but there’s nothing like a face to face chat, sharing stories in real life. And the way to get the best out of each chat is to be mindful, to consistently show up, be present and let go of the outcome.
And of course, there could be good food and wine to help the conversation get started.
Working in health, aged and community care is tough, unrelenting and not for the faint-hearted. One of the bright spots is being able to talk with other experienced leaders about stuff that matters and things that work; especially practical and simple things that you can use immediately in your own practice to improve your care and service. But this can be hard to find. So we provide opportunities to discuss the tough stuff and get some practical ideas for thriving and surviving in your work.
Women who work in the caring professions are exactly that, caring, and whenever and wherever we can we share our wisdom, time and energy. If your goal is to make a difference in your profession and organisation, for your consumers, we’d love you to be a part of ‘Women Who Care – Committed to creating great care everywhere.’ Send me an email if you’d like to know more.
How does it work?
We plan to run regular Women Who Care Confab Dinners. (Our first event SOLD OUT in just a few days). We know that your time is precious, so the evenings are specifically designed for you to learn something useful, as well as connect with others who are working to make a difference in health, aged and community services.
A guest speaker gives us the latest theory and practice on a useful topic, for example, how to engage staff in change, how to get your message heard with senior staff, how to plan for real results or how take better care of yourself in a challenging environment. Each speaker must include three ‘Care Points’ from their research, experience or both that can and have improved things for consumers and health professionals.
We then have some discussion, Q & A, and each person commits to implementing one of the Care Points in their life.
And a big part of the caring is giving, so we ask each Confab participant to make a donation to our charity of choice – Very Special Kids. So the idea is to do something for women in health, aged and community services AND raise some funds for a good cause; helping fabulous women who care to achieve their potential – and in the process helping Very Special Kids achieve theirs.
Thanks for reading.
[i] Mehl MR & Vazire S. Eavesdropping on Happiness: Well-being is related to having less small talk and more substantive conversations. Psychol Sci. 2010 Apr 1; 21(4): 539-541.