BIG TALK Thanksgiving Game, Fulbright Research Update, & Three-Year Anniversary Letter

Hi friends,

First, on the eve of Thanksgiving, I want to say thanks for being here. :)

Second, here is a “Big Talk Thanksgiving” activity you can try out tomorrow at dinner surrounded by your family, friends, and guests. (Scroll to bottom of page to download).

Third, this is also an update about life for loved ones, and kind acquaintances around the world who show support / interest in seeing Big Talk grow. Since August 10, 2017, I’ve lived in Singapore after being awarded a Fulbright Grant to research “Bridging East-West communications through Big Talk.” But as my Fulbright advisor at the National University of Singapore, Dr. Yew reminded me, “Life is more complex than binaries. What is East and what is West?”  

This research has led me deep into the mode of conducting a literature review across the fields of “intercultural communications, psychology, and conflict studies,” to find out if the BIG TALK method of ‘asking deep questions’ can generate empathy, and impede conflict between members of disparate cultures. My highest dream for Big Talk hasn’t changed… I hope it can one day be used as a concrete tool and methodology for helping to bridge conflict across international divides.

Tennessee Williams wrote, “Time is the farthest difference between two places.” But now that 1/3 of my Fulbright tenure in Singapore is over, I feel time moving faster and faster than ever. And the speed which I call “fast” only continues to move ever faster -

Here are a few other ways I have made use of my time in Singapore over the past 3 months:

-Delivered a research talk at NUS

-Led a BIG TALK at the US Ambassador’s house

-Trained with the marines at the US Embassy

-Learned how to surf in Bali with my friend Beckie who started her own bikini line

-Picked up salsa dancing skills with friends from Japan

-Hiked through central Sri Lanka with my friend Theresa, a logic PhD student at Yale-NUS

-Showed my mom Singapore with my “Singapore host mom”

-Signed with a local modeling agency

-Volunteered with PEMCA, a research initiative to help migrant workers report work-site injuries and accidents

And now with only 7 months left here (officially), beyond the research project, I have made several other goals (I keep them as my iphone screensaver)...We’ll see how many I actually achieve!

Because Big Talk has so many components, I’ve been trying to sort it out into categories (i.e. Personal, Research, Business, Nonprofit partnerships / Education, Video). But truthfully, I feel - The shape of Big Talk is still amorphous! I let people define it for themselves in the stories they share with me.  

That is why, I want to share this Thanksgiving game with you. If you’re feeling brave, you can record the stories and share them with me by filling out this form. And let me know if you give me permission to publish yours on the Big Talk website, Facebook group, and Instagram.

A more in depth version of the game can be found at this link. (Makes for a good stocking stuffer too!)

Thank you for reading, and Happy Thanksgiving!

Warm regards,