Tuesday, November 25, 2008

National Day of Listening

For years I was told it was "rude" to ask questions. There have been so many fascinating older people in my life I never got to know because I didn't want to appear pushy or too inquisitive. The reality is that they might have enjoyed my questions and been complemented by my interest. Over the past two years I have been doing my best to be more engaging, more inquisitive, more nosy :) It's made even easier with all of the great tools available.

This morning, I found this brilliant idea on Ali Edward's Blog (where else?) and wanted to pass it along in case you missed it. StoryCorps is a not for profit organization in the US which encourages people to honour and celebrate the lives of those around us by listening. They have designated this Friday, the day after American Thanksgiving, as National Day of Listening.

From their website:

This holiday season, ask the people around you about their lives — it could be your grandmother, a teacher, or someone from the neighborhood. By listening to their stories, you will be telling them that they matter and they won’t ever be forgotten. It may be the most meaningful time you spend this year.

Over the next few weeks we will all be, hopefully, surrounded by loved ones. It's a perfect time to plan to do some listening to family members! The idea of this project is to actually record your family member, friend, teacher, etc., sharing a story with you - use your gadget of choice to collect these kernels of life.

On the website you will find some super tools to help you. Click on "participate" to download their "Do It Yourself"guide. There is a very useful step-by-step list in pdf form which you can print off. Not only that, but there is an on-line question generator to kick start your own question list.

To quote Ali: Listening, sharing, documenting...awesome. You never know if this may be the last opportunity to gather a story from someone you love. Take advantage of this opportunity.

Who are you going to "interview" this holiday season? Who would you most like to interview? Let me know!

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