July 11, 2014

Book Review Fridays- Crucial Conversations- Tools for talking when stakes are high

Okay so this wasn't the best of self-help books, but it does what it says- it helps you navigate through "crucial conversations."  The writing style is easy to grasp, and reading seems more like an instruction manual rather than a smooth read.

Usually, I'm not too keen on these types of books, but I was handed this to read by my old boss. My boss! He had said this helped him in his career and home-life, and perhaps I could find the same benefit?

 I left it on my bookshelf for a very long time feeling this was a useless book. Maybe he thought, we weren't seeing eye to eye. I later found out, it was because he thought I could improve my communication skills.  Well Mr., It's not like a book can teach me how to converse correctly.

A year after when I finally left the job (we moved), I picked up this book again. I was looking for something to do while feeding my little one. I had already tapped out my collection at home, and this book was just staring me in the face. Begrudgingly, it began.

So, it can't teach you to talk right, but it can help you get in the right frame of mind for when you really need to get the words out. You can apply it to almost any situation in which you may find emotionally trying, doesn't have to be in a professional setting.

 Surprisingly, it wasn't as bad as I thought it would be. I got through it pretty quickly. Skimming helped a lot because it was repetitive at times.

It provides structure, and guidance on staying cool in the moment, and choosing the right words to deliver our message.

I actually have applied some of the concepts such as what is discussed in chapters 3, and 6. Chapter  3 is about staying focused on what your intended goal from the conversation is. Chapter 6 is helping the other person in the conversation stay involved. This way you can really have a two way conversation. I cannot say what a huge help that has been. I now modify my words depending on the situation and person. I can honestly say it works. Not like magic though, you just have to keep the book as a frame of reference in mind.

Overall, my giving this read a chance turned out to be a pleasant surprise.

Score- 3.5 out 5

If you would like to read this book, you can purchase it here at Amazon.com

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