Use this as a reference for the games we will play tonight.
The first two are variations of two games we played at the previous LAR authentic relating meetup. The last game is new for LAR but is found in multiple authentic relating manuals available online.
The goal of this meetup is to have fun, foster more interpersonal connection, and see if we can collectively improve our emotional intelligence. If you're not having fun, or an interaction made you feel uncomfortable, please feel free to excuse yourself from the situation, and/or find Max (this meetup's facilitator).
- Question Rating (variation)
This is the same game we played before, with the following change: there is now time included for the person rating questions to answer one or more of the questions they liked.
Full rules: split up in to pairs (do not pair up with the same person from last time). Each pair will take turns being the asker and the answerer. Set a timer for 2 minutes. The asker will ask the answerer a series of conversational questions (can be about anything) and the answerer will respond to each question ONLY with a number from 1 to 10, indicating how interested they would be to actually answer that question.
Try to keep this rapid fire, free-association-style if you can, the goal is not to think too analytically about finding the optimal question, but to engage your intuitive mind. Don't keep track of what questions were asked, try to stay in a flow state.
After the timer goes off, start it again (this time for 3 minutes) and the person who was just rating questions can answer any of the questions that you as a pair remember. If you don't remember any questions specifically, just have a free flowing conversation, feel free to discuss what you think you learned, if anything.
After this 5 minutes is up, swap roles and do it again. So in total, this game should take about ten minutes.
2. Active Listening, Noticing, and Summarizing
This is the same as the third game we played last time, except the person who observed and described the speaker's body language should instead observe and describe the speaker's intonation, any emotion in their voice, volume, pacing/pauses, if anything sounded especially natural or forced, etc. – basically observe and describe elements of verbal communication not present in the literal words themselves.
Full rules: split up into groups of three (different groups than last time). Each group will rotate through the following roles in 3 rounds:
- A speaker, who will talk extemporaneously for 3 minutes (set a timer) about any topic with personal significance in their life
- A summarizer, who will actively listen to the speaker and then have 90 seconds to describe in their own words, their best understanding of what the speaker said
- An "expression noticer" (??) who will actively listen to the speaker and then have ninety seconds to describe the speaker's intonation, any emotion in their voice, volume, pacing/pauses, if anything sounded especially natural or forced, etc. – basically they should observe and describe elements of verbal communication not present in the literal words themselves.
So in each round, you will set a timer for 3 minutes for the speaker, a timer for ninety seconds for the summarizer, and a timer for ninety seconds for the expression notice. Each round will take 6 minutes so the game as a whole should ideally take around 18 minutes (but in practice will take longer).
The goal of this game is to experiment with practicing intentional active listening and noticing and appreciating different elements of interpersonal communication.
3. "Hot Seat"
This is a new game (for us) that seems to be fairly canon in the Authentic Relating world. I think the goal of this game is mainly to have fun, and maybe learn some new/spicy/surprising things about someone as a cohesive group.
One volunteer (at a time) sits on the "hot seat" (a chair) and becomes the Answerer. Anyone else (an Asker) can raise their hand to ask the Answerer a question– about anything. The Answerer can decline to answer any question, lie, tell the truth, or some combination of the above, just like in real life.
The Asker of a given question can say "thank you" at any time– including interrupting the Answerer, at which point the Answerer will stop answering, and a different Asker will ask a new question.
Answerers should actively feel free to decline questions! Askers should actively feel free to say "thank you"! Keep things moving!
The only people in the room talking should be the Answerer in the hot seat, the Asker when asking a question or saying "thank you", and the facilitator when needed. If you want to have a side conversation, kindly go outside.
We'll rotate through volunteer Answerers roughly every 7 minutes.
- Everyone in the room should try to maintain full attention on the Answerer in the hot seat, even while someone is asking them a question
- Questions should be "interested" and not "interesting"– in other words, they should ideally maintain focus on the Answerer and not draw excess attention to the Asker (e.g. by trying to be overly clever, or injecting )
- Answerers may ask clarifying questions, but that is their answer. E.g. if I answer with a clarifying question, you should say "thank you" and a different Asker can continue that line of questioning if they wish.