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Turning to One Another: Simple Conversations to Restore Hope to the Future
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Turning to One Another: Simple Conversations to Restore Hope to the Future

4.11 of 5 stars 4.11  ·  rating details  ·  280 ratings  ·  32 reviews
""I believe we can change the world if we start talking to one another again."" With this simple declaration, Margaret Wheatley proposes that citizens band together with their colleagues and friends to create the solutions for social change, both locally and globally, that are so badly needed. Such change will not come from governments or corporations but from the ageless ...more
Paperback, 150 pages
Published January 1st 2002 by Berrett-Koehler Publishers
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Karen Jordan
This book was the closest thing to a spiritual renewal I have experienced in a long while. Wheatley argues convincingly that we need to restore the practice of conversation. That our state of exhaustion, frustration, and anxiety are built upon a foundation of quick, dispassionate, joyless exchanges. I would encourage anyone who is feeling a bit disheartened about our world and consider Wheatley's position that human connectedness is the place from which we can find solutions, hope, and faith in ...more
During our Connections Week at TCC, a speaker mentioned this book by Margaret Wheatley. I remembered reading her first edition in 2002, and this one was a nice refresher of her wonderful writing style. This second edition added two new conversations: What is my role in creating change? and Can I be fearless? One of my favorite sections was a poem that Wheatley included by Ina Hughes titled "A Prayer for Children", in particular the last two verses:

"And we pray for those Whose nightmares come in
It is difficult not to enjoy anything by Margaret Wheatley. This book contains helpful ways to generate conversations that may lead to positive communal action.
As a conversation designer of sorts, I appreciate Margaret's thoughtful perspective on using conversations to provoke reflection, community and collaboration.
Billicarole Evans
This book is about is about communicating with one another. Wheatley writes how talking, face to face, is the easiest way of communication. This book is a great conversation starter. It inspires you to want to talk more, to make a difference. She explains how most of this world problems can be solved, by simply talking.
I liked this book, because it inspired me to want to talk more when working out problems. After reading her book, it changed the way that I start conversations, and the content w
This book gave me a lot to think about. Part listening skills and part self observation based on 10 questions I learned a few things about myself.
This is a book that everyone should read. Meg Wheatley writes about human behavior and communication. This book, originally written in 2002 and augmented in 2008, speaks to the need for us to slow down, spend time in conversation and dialogue, and thereby build community.

Like Margaret Mead, she argues that great change happens when two or more people engage in meaningful conversations.

The book is short and full of inspirational ideas, poetry and 10 conversation starters.

Very highly recommended.
This book shares some of the author's ideas about community and conversation, and promotes the concept that by changing how we think and engage with others we can change the world for good. While I did enjoy the book--particularly the collected stories, quotes, and poems on the subject--there was really nothing here that I haven't read elsewhere. If you don't mind a little repetitive writing it does provide the reader an opportunity to consider their own mode of thinking and communication.
It's a good read to really spark up some conversations with others as well as yourself. I especially recommend sitting with the question of Am I Willing to Reclaim the Time to Think and What it means to be fully human.

At parts, I found myself getting a little bored because it can be repetitive.
I really enjoyed this book. It has very astute observations about issues that teachers currently face in public schools. It doesn't offer solutions because that is not its purpose. Its purpose is to empower teachers to solve their own problems through reflection, conversation and action.
Margaret Wheatley highlights the power of simple conversation. She does this through combining social justice influences through Paolo Friere and Buddhist mindfulness practices to create a wonderful text that implores us to seek our full humanity by engaging with one another.
Jessie Lindsey
Beautiful thoughts, just not a page-turner of a read.
An excellent and practical book for reflecting on how to make change in communities.

Margaret Wheatley is one of the foremost thinkers about "emergent culture." She is on the board of the Berkana Institute ( which works worldwide for positive change.
Brit Hanson
This book has been a fabulous resource in my community organizing work. Meg Wheatley is a treasure; she invites the read to step back from the complication that is problem-solving and consider an alternate route. Great book -- the title is spot on.
Full of great thoughts about how talking to each other can change the world. Unfortunately, it's not a very compelling read. It loses momentum frequently. Thus, though it is an enjoyable book for the most part, it has been returned to the shelf for now.
Somewhat interesting organizational studies text...not a ton of meat to it, you can read it in an hour, but still more useful than most of the bulls--t I read when getting my leadership degree. A very personal, meditative take on human interaction.
Molly Giddens
Looking to use this with my cfg...

The majority is really great! There are parts that didn't move me, but maybe will at some other part in my life. I really look forward to using this with groups at school.
The premise of this book is lovely -- but the actual conversations leave something to be desired. I wonder if it's simply that we don't know how to have the kind of conversations that Wheatley is suggesting.
Liz Brennan
Anything by Margaret Wheatley is at the same time soothing, calming, and thought-provoking. From the book,"We can turn away, or we can turn toward. Those are the only two choices we have."
Kristin Cox
Meg Wheatley translates philosophical concepts into action items to create community and meaning. Gives a starting point to build that "third place" interaction that weaves us together.
Marcia Arganbright
This book was transformational for me. Creating and relying on community is all we need to be successful in life. There are beautiful pages, quotations, and inspiring essays.
Elena Aguilar
This is one of those that I read over and over, that I share pieces of with those I love. her prose and proposals are so simple and profound.
Rob Yackley
Wheatley--ever the idealist--still manages to inspire me to pursue community rather than structures as my core organizing principle.
Great little book that demonstrates how the simple act of having a conversation can help bring about a more peaceful world
Great book for in depth conversation structure to understand our mindset and others in building a tighter team.
Bjørn Peterson
Exactly what the sub-title says, Wheatley delivers. One of her most practically applicable books.
Karen Cockerill
Awesome reflections, mediations and of course would be great for courageous conversations....
Cindy Westover
It is time to restore hope and this time we must take action with our hope!
David Roberts
Beautifully and thoughtfully written. Why can't we just all get along...
somewhat thought provoking, but not on a deep level.
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