Level III: H.E.A.R.T.S.

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Players are now using Conversational EQ for situations that require additional sensitivity and empathy. Level III begins to add H.E.A.R.T.S. to our engagements. 


  • 23    Response cards (black backs)
  • 6      Open Question cards (black backs)
  • 17     Emotion cards (white backs)
  • 6      Prime Emotions cards (white backs)
  • 1       Instructions card (black back)
  • 1      H.E.A.R.T.S. card (green back)

Game Length

This game is designed for 3-4 players.

Quick Game

  • 3 players – distribute 3 black cards each
  • 4 players – distribute 4 black cards each

Full Game

  • 3 players – distribute 4 black cards each
  • 4 players – distribute 6 black cards each


1. Shuffle all white cards and place them in a pile in the centre of the group.

2. Shuffle all black cards and distribute them based on number of players and game length (as noted above).

3. Place extra black cards in a draw pile to the side.

4. Determine which player will begin the game, called the "Conversation Starter".

NOTE: Players will take turns being the "Conversation Starter" throughout the game.

Level III: Gameplay

Regular Gameplay

1. The "Conversation Starter" draws a white card and places it face-up in front of them.

2. The "Conversation Starter" chooses one of the three emotions on the card and makes an “I feel” and “I think” statement using that emotion.

Example: “I feel anxious because I think I failed an exam.”

3. The rest of the players each play a black card from their hand and respond with an Appreciation and a Reflection.

Example: “I understand why you feel anxious because school puts a lot of pressure on students to do well.”

NOTE: If a player runs out of black cards in their hand and other players’ have cards remaining, that player takes the top card from the draw pile and plays it.

4. The "Conversation Starter" considers everybody’s Appreciations and Reflections and awards all white and black cards played in this round to the person whose Appreciation and Reflection demonstrated the most H.E.A.R.T.S.

NOTE: The "Conversation Starter" may decide to divide the white and black cards among one or more players if they felt that everyone in the group demonstrated H.E.A.R.T.S.

5. The winner(s) of the round add the cards to their Emotional Wealth Bank.

The player to the left of the round’s "Conversation Starter" becomes the next round’s "Conversation Starter".

Wild Cards

There are 2 types of Wild Cards that change regular gameplay in Level III: Open Question cards and Prime Six emotion cards.

Open Question Cards

These black cards get players to practice Open Questions, and gives them the chance to increase the award pile at the end of the round. A player can choose to play an Open Question card instead of a regular Response card.

1. When an Open Question card is played, the person who played that card asks the "Conversation Starter" an Open Question relating to their “I feel” and “I think” statement.

Example: “What kind of exam made you feel anxious?”

2. The "Conversation Starter" responds to the Open Question.

Example: “It was a multiple choice exam about forest ecosystems."

3. The rest of the players then each play another black card and make another Appreciation and Reflection based on the "Conversation Starter's" “I feel” and “I think” statement.

The round continues as normal. See Regular Gameplay, steps 4-6.

Prime Six "But" Cards

These white cards may be turned over by a "Conversation Starter" rather than a regular Emotion card.

1. The "Conversation Starter" makes an “I feel” and “I think” statement based on the Prime Six emotion on the card, and follows it with a “But…”

Example: “I feel sad because I think I failed an exam, but I have another exam coming up that I feel confident in.”

2. The "Conversation Starter" immediately adds the Prime Six emotion card to their personal Emotional Wealth Bank.

3. The "Conversation Starter" turns over another white emotion card and gameplay continues..

Optional Rule: After a Prime Six "But" card, the next white emotion card that is played must be related to the Prime Six "But"card that was played.

The round continues as normal. See Regular Gameplay, steps 4-6.

Winning the Game

The game ends when there are no more black cards in players’ hands to be played.

All players add up the number of Joy Coins in their Emotional Wealth Bank by counting the total number of Joy Coin symbols on the backs of the cards they won throughout the game.

The person who collected the most Joy Coins – and therefore demonstrated the most H.E.A.R.T.S in the conversations – is deemed the winner.

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