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Publisher's Summary

"We need to talk."

They are, perhaps, the most dreaded four words in the English language. But in her timely, insightful, and wonderfully practical audiobook, We Need to Talk, Celeste Headlee - who earns a living by talking on the airwaves of National Public Radio - makes the case that they are urgently needed.

Today, most of us communicate from behind electronic screens, and studies show that Americans feel less connected and more divided than ever before. The blame for some of this disconnect can be attributed to our political landscape, but the erosion of our conversational skills as a society lies with us as individuals.

And the only way forward, says Headlee, is to start talking to each other. In We Need to Talk, she outlines the strategies that have made her a better conversationalist - and offers simple tools that can improve anyone's communication. For example:

  • Be there or go elsewhere. Human beings are incapable of multitasking, and this is especially true of tasks that involve language. Think you can type up a few emails while on a business call or hold a conversation with your child while texting your spouse? Think again.
  • Check your bias. The belief that your intelligence protects you from erroneous assumptions can end up making you more vulnerable to them. We all have blind spots that affect the way we view others. Check your bias before you judge someone else.
  • Hide your phone. Don't just put down your phone; put it away. New research suggests that the mere presence of a cell phone can negatively impact the quality of a conversation.

Whether you're struggling to communicate with your kid's teacher at school, an employee at work, or the people you love the most, Headlee offers smart strategies that can help us all have conversations that matter.

©2017 Celeste Headlee (P)2017 HarperCollins Publishers

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  • Overall
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loved this book

having conversations is so important, and Celeste Headlee offers science, observation, and years of being a radio host to help. If you liked her TED talk, this is the book for you

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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I am the one that have a problem

this help me a lot to learn how to talk by listening. And thank you

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Bella
  • Los Angeles
  • 10-03-17

A much needed book for our time

Since finishing this book, I have become so much more aware of how much people talk about themselves (myself included) and barely listen or ask questions. This awareness is frustrating, but reading this book has made me realize it isn't only in my corner in the world, and that if I want it to change, I can start by improving my own conversational skills (and listening skills!).

The author does a terrific job stating her case and makes a lot of great points, while never sounding preachy (she herself states often how guilty she regularly is of the faux pauxs she criticizes. I hope everyone will read this book.

5 of 6 people found this review helpful

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Refreshing! A must read!

Great book! Easy to listen, fabulous content. Stop reading more reviews and get it, you will not regret it :)

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Thoughtful

At 62 I’ve read much, talked much, thought I was listening much and now I have a few more reminders for improved conversations!
Thank you

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Great content after a few chapters

Once I got past all of the evolution fluff it was a great book with practical tips, such as being honest when you’re tired or distracted & requesting to talk later when you’re able give them your focus.

I bookmarked chapter 7 and repeated the book a second time from there. I’ll def

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Just Awesome

Wish I’d read this 40 years ago! Really changed how I think about conversation and my own challenges with communication.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Great insights!

Great insights into the power and difficulties of having good conversations. Truly offers solutions to problems upu don't realize you have.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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tears of appreciation hit my cheeks at the end<br />

Making many changes based what I've learned from this great book. I've been sharing with others too.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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A must read.

The United States as a whole should be reading this book. A must read if you care at all about communication, it application, and how to really connect with those around you.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful