General Question

lanahopple's avatar

What are the things you should do to be a better conversation holder?

Asked by lanahopple (455points) December 17th, 2009

I’m really outgoing when I’m around my friends that i have known for a while, but when it comes to talking to people that i barley know or have a few classes I become really boring, and during the whole conversation I’m not good at making good conversation that makes them laugh or having a fun engaging conversation.

Are there any tips in making the conversation longer, more laid back and not so small talk-ish?

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21 Answers

chelseababyy's avatar

Listen mindfully.
Show that you care by restating (paraphrasing) what the person is talking about.
Find common ground with people.

NUNYA's avatar

Kinda tough if the 2 of you hang out on a day to day basis. I think that don’t leave you much to chit chat about. But find a similar intrest……....sewing or children or a hobbie like knitting or something along those lines. Before you know it, you’ll be yakin’ up a storm!

SirGoofy's avatar

Don’t drink 3 beers and a big glass of water before striking up a conversation. It looks better if you don’t have to bug out real fast or dance around like you need to go wee-wee.
Been there, done that.

lanahopple's avatar

Haha okay this is my chance to find a knitting buddy ;)
okay i have been trying to think of stuff to talk about thats not
really bland but i dont know i end up sounding really stupid or
somewhat rude in a sence I’m not sure why

LocoLuke's avatar

I usually end up exchanging funny / crazy stories with people I’ve just met. Seems to work well enough for me.

evandad's avatar

If you trip about it you’ll never be comfortable in the conversation. Not every comment can be a gem. Sometimes they’re going to be out of sync or even total bombs. Sometimes they’ll be right on the money. If you worry about it you’re fighting with yourself.

lillycoyote's avatar

I think it can be really tricky. You have to manage a very delicate balance between listening, asking questions and talking about yourself, but not too much, when it is appropriate. I think it also helps to learn how to tell a story well. You have, of course, had experiences that are interesting, like everyone, but it’s not always how interesting the experience is but how well you tell the tale. You also might want to observe people, maybe at a party or a club, who seem to be good conversationalists, people who other people seem to interested in, or even entranced with.

lanahopple's avatar

Okay i’ll definatly try that. And Thanx everyone!

TominLasVegas's avatar

Keep your finger out of your nose.

Stop staring at her boobs

If its a male stop staring at his double chin

nod if you don’t know

pretend to fall asleep

Corporate_Avenger's avatar

Always be confident and positive – people are drawn to strength
Make good eye contact – it draws people into what you are saying
Ask them questions and listen, respond as you well as you can, formulate as necessary
Fluctuate the intonation of your voice – do not be monotonous
Compliment them on something benign; dress, jewelry, eyeglass frames – people like people who make them feel good about themselves.

wundayatta's avatar

Become as educated as you can. Read widely. What this will do is enable you to make a connection with other things to almost any subject that comes up. You’ll be able to see things in a humorous or ironic light. You’ll also be able to make quips and puns that are much more apt. You won’t have to resort to tried and true, but old bromides in humor such as fart jokes. And who knows, maybe you’ll even have something to say that actually educates some of the others in your group.

One problem. It’s a major investment of time. On the other hand, it’ll do you well for decades to come. Be careful, though. I doubt if you want to end up with a head like mine—oval, white, filled with weird yellow stuff.

SeventhSense's avatar

Yes because people find phrases like “old bromides in humor” side splitting.

wundayatta's avatar

Yes because people find phrases like “old bromides in humor” side splitting.

Only if you can light them on fire!

bricklayer's avatar

Definitely agree with listening (carefully). Other things I’ve found helpful:

1) Don’t jump to conclusions (especially if someone is sharing their struggles)
2) Avoid giving advice immediately
3) Ask if you don’t understand what someone is saying
4) Ask open-ended questions beginning with “What” or “How”
5) Be interested in the other person

There are probably a lot more things to mention than these, but it’s a place to start.

mattbrowne's avatar

Good listening skills are key. But this only works if you have a genuine interest in other people and a variety of subjects. Share your own insights. Read lots of books, at least 20–30 per year. You will have more interesting conversations.

SeventhSense's avatar

Take a genuine interest in them and ask them questions about themselves without being too intrusive. People love to talk about themselves and they will find you fascinating if they are allowed to express their thoughts. It helps to have an interest in their topics and a little understanding but it’s not as important as allowing them space to speak.

dawn2k1's avatar

I would have to say that being a good listener is the best way to hold a good convo. I really like to listen to people and give them my full attention because Most of the time they really need someone to talk to that they feel like is Listening.

lanahopple's avatar

Everything has been working great so far, and now im not even trying its totally natural now. Thanks to all of you :)

bustmust's avatar

Actually pay attention to what the other person is saying to you. Don’t wander off in your mind and start working on what you’re going to say next while the other person is talking to you.

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