Some people seem to have an endless supply of things to say, while others can barely maintain a conversation for two sentences. We’re all different in that regard.
The more introverted of us often have greater struggles with prolonging conversations beyond the introduction and exchange of niceties.
But never fear, there are plenty of strategies that will help anyone to have much better conversation skills!
You have more to say than you think. And even if you don’t, you can become adept at getting others to speak!
Keep any conversation going with these strategies:
- Have an interesting life. It’s easy to have a never-ending stream of conversation topics if you have an interesting life. Have a full life that you enjoy and conversations are a lot less work.
- Have a few good stories ready to go. Be prepared with a few interesting stories. It could be something that happened to you recently, in your childhood, or even something that you read in the news.
- Just let it out. Avoid filtering yourself. While being crude is rarely the way to go, there are few things more boring than someone that is too proper or politically correct. You simply come off as a bland rule-follower. Let your individuality shine by speaking your mind.
- Be a good listener. People love to have conversations with those that are truly listening and paying attention. Give your conversation partner your complete and undivided attention. Maintain good eye contact and stay focused. You’ll be amazed by how much this helps your conversational skills.
- Ask open-ended questions. Avoid asking questions that can be answered with just a word or two. This will help to keep the conversation from dying over and over. Let’s consider a few examples:
– Closed-ended: What do you like on your pizza?
– Open-ended: What do you like about camping?
– Closed-ended: What is your favorite sports team?
– Open-ended: If you could travel anywhere, where would you go and why?
– Closed-ended: Where were you born?
– Open-ended: What is your best childhood memory?
- Look to your environment for ideas. Your immediate environment is rich with conversation topics. Some examples include:
– The weather
– The people around you
– The artwork on the walls
– The music
– The food
– The trees and flowers
– Anything you can see, hear, smell, taste, or touch
- Practice. You can’t become good at anything without practice. Fortunately, there are people all around you. With the internet, you’re never at a loss for someone to speak to. Strike up at least one conversation each day. Practice with those you know and strangers.
- Relax. View each conversation as a pleasant diversion. Avoid viewing your interactions with others as a competition. You don’t have to impress anyone. You don’t have to achieve any particular milestones in order to feel good about the interaction. Just enjoy yourself without expectations.
– If you can relax during your interactions with others, your ability to converse with others will skyrocket. We all like to be around relaxed, confident people.
Good conversation skills are invaluable. People enjoy having meaningful conversations with others. It’s also hard to undo a first impression, and the first impression people have of you is often during an initial conversation.
Good conversation skills can have a great impact on your social life, career, and relationships. Like it or not, this is a valuable skill to have. Even if you’re not a naturally chatty person, you can learn how to never run out of things to say.