Conversation bridges are opening statements that can increase connection
and constructive dialogue. Below is a list of statements that you may wish
I am angry because I want . . .
I wish . . .
I have a strong desire for . . .
This is what things are about for me . . .
I need . . .
My thinking tells me . . .
I’m telling myself . . .
These statements really bring the focus back to you and seek to explain
things from your perspective. People are more inclined to lean towards and
become more open if they sense you are taking responsibility for what you
are feeling and needing or for your own interpretations.
Conversation rifts are opening statements that decrease connection and
promote destructive dialogue. Below is a list of statements where any
sentence you complete them with will have little effect in getting you what
you want and so you will want to avoid.
The problem with you is . . .
You’re such a . . .
You never . . .
You always . . .
What’s wrong with you . . .
You don’t . . .
Why can’t you just . . .
You make me feel as though . . .
Instead of saying statements like these, use statements which begin with
The way I see it is . . .
I have a need for . . .
I love it when . . .
My perspective is . . .
Watch out for words like always and never. They are exaggerations of the
truth and will provide a distraction from the issue at hand if you use them.
People will often be more concerned with the times they aren’t like what
you’re suggesting and will want recognition for that. This makes them lose
sight of the heart of the matter. So it is better to be specific with ‘always’