Research shows that almost half of our conversations are about ourselves.
We tell stories to try to define who we are, to ourselves, and to others. By telling stories we bond. By listening to other peoples stories we strenghten that bond. The bonding activates the brain’s reward system, just like sex or food. The reward system is activated more when the listener asks questions about the thoughts and feelings regarding the story, which is called active listening. (Active) listening to others is the emotional equivalent of giving them sex or food.
Personally, I love the process of 2 stories being integrated to 1!
– Mike Lehr, The feminine influence in business
– Frank Rose, The selfish meme, The Atlantic, October 2012 edition