The most basic of all human needs is to understand and be understood. The best way to understand people is to listen to them. ―Ralph G. Nichols

Day of Listening

Today is StoryCorps’ National Day of Listening, which is intended to encourage people to have a meaningful conversation with a loved one. In case you aren’t familiar with StoryCorps, it’s a non-profit organization dedicated to recording, preserving, and sharing the stories of Americans from all backgrounds and beliefs. 

Black Friday

Today is also, of course, Black Friday—a day of insane, “door-busting” deals on electronics and housewares and clothes and anything you can think of. The irony that this national day of accumulation comes hours after Thanksgiving isn’t lost on me. And—hey—I like cheap stuff as much as the next person (possibly more), but this year I’m going to try to remember to take a few minutes to have and record a conversation with a member of my family. If you choose to do the same, remember that the recording doesn’t have to be audio; you can always write about or transcribe it. You could even simply sit quietly and remember a conversation you had with a loved one in the past and then write about it.

A story from a friend or family member is something that will last much longer than a new set of towels.