The Letterloop Blog 📝

Issue No.27 · September 3, 2021

5 Questions with Norman Tran

Norman Tran is the "Chief Explanation Officer" at Relating Between the Lines, where he teaches communication skills for healthy personal relationships. For fun, he is a junior jazz pianist, impish improviser, and absolutely an alliteration addict.

1. You have a week without WiFi — what are you doing?
Finishing Lulu Miller's "Why Fish Don't Exist," practicing some piano chords & runs by Anomalie, and journaling at a park or beach!

2. The traits I most value in my friendships are:
1. Range: Someone who can move between the profane and profound with me because life is more fun with both depth and silliness!

2. Integrity: Someone who takes ownership of their emotions, behaviors, and life.

3. Curiosity: Someone who has a thirst for understanding themselves, others, and the world at large.

3. What's your best advice for how to deepen your relationships?
Choose Heartbreak over Harmony: Do, say, and face what's needed - even when it's hard.

The people meant to stay will, and the others who aren't will fade away. Painful? Yes. But what task is more worthy than finding the people you want to do life with?

4. A good apology includes:
1. Remorse: "I'm sorry"
2. Ownership: "I see how [action] caused [impact]"
3. Empathetic Perspective-Taking: "And I can imagine how painful it must feel to experience [action]"
4. Remediation: "Going forward, I'm going to [plan] to prevent [impact] from happening again."

5. What I wish more people knew about me is:
Because of my ADHD & giftedness, I have an unfair advantage for visualizing and explaining ideas. Workshop participants have even told me "I wish I could do what you do."But it's not easy being neurodivergent! I hope people know that though what I create might seem impressive, even "effortless," I want to be treated as a human, not a creative spectacle.

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