The art of conversation is complex, powerful, and deeply personal. While it takes time to learn how to carry on a conversation with ease, it’s definitely a skill worth having. After all it is conversations that bring people together. So, if you want to learn how to talk to others like a pro, read on for some great tips and tricks that will turn you into a master conversationalist in no time flat.

Do you ever find yourself wondering how to carry on a conversation? Do others seem to be able to talk to people they’ve just met with ease, while you struggle to keep people interested in what you have to say?

If so, don’t worry. People may not always admit it, but the truth of the matter is that carrying on a conversation is hard. Being able to talk to people you don’t know very well or to talk to anyone for an extended period of time takes practice and skill.

While some seem naturally gifted at conversation, others feel uncomfortable talking to others (especially those they’ve just met). Luckily, it doesn’t have to be this way. Really! With the right tips and a bit of practice, just about anyone can master the complex art of conversation.

Avoid Awkward Silences

Almost nothing kills a conversation quicker than dead air. Awkward silences happen for a wide variety of reasons. Whether they arise because you ask the wrong questions. Or, because your conversation partner wasn’t paying attention. Or, because both parties simply can’t think of anything to say. Awkward silences make people feel uncomfortable. This discourages them from being open and sociable. And while everyone is bound to experience awkward silences and pauses eventually, there are ways to reduce their frequency.

How To Carry On A Conversation Without Small Talk

For instance, one great way to keep a conversation flowing is to avoid bringing typical “small talk” topics at the beginning of the conversation. These topics tend to be things about work, the weather, and current events. In many conversations, people expect to be asked what they do for a living. Or, what they think about the big movie that everyone went to see. There’s nothing wrong with small-talk, but you should consider them to be your back-up topics, not your go-to starters.

So next time you find yourself in conversation, hold off on asking someone about such commonplace topics. Wait until you sense a lull or an awkward silence creeping up on you. Then, you can avoid dead air without saying something ridiculous. You can also avoid being forced to come up with an original topic under pressure.

Ask The Right Questions

One of the most important things to master when learning how to carry on a conversation is the art of questioning. Conversations are often built on questions.

Avoid asking yes/no questions at all costs. Such questions don’t encourage a person to elaborate or to share much about themselves. You can think of them as the dead-end streets of conversation-town. “How” and “why” questions are the best for getting people to talk freely and for learning the most you can about them.

If a “how” or “why” question doesn’t seem natural, try a “what,” “where,” or a “who” one instead. Then, if you can, follow up with a “how” or “why” question. Such follow-up questions are a great way to keep a conversation moving. It also shows someone that you are paying attention to what he or she is saying.

Try not to ask questions about subjects that are likely to make someone uncomfortable. If you’ve just met, or suspect their views might differ from yours, pick topics carefully. For example, don’t ask about religion, politics, or anything else “touchy”. The last thing you want is for a conversation to end on a negative note. If people want to share that type of information, allow them to do so in their own time. Keep in mind some questions are best suited to ask a girl and some are better for guys.

Neutral Questions

Next time you are engaged in conversation try giving some of these questions a try:
• You seem really passionate about your career, how did you figure out it was the right one for you?
• What’s your favorite place to unwind? Why?
• Is there anything you’ve always wanted to do? What’s on your bucket list?
• Who or what inspires you? What is it that you admire most about them/it most?
• What’s one thing you couldn’t live without?
• Is there one book you could read over and over again and never get tired of? What is it about it that makes it so special?
• What do you think is the secret to being successful?
• What would be your perfect day?
• What types of sports do you like? Are you an outdoors person?

Use Anecdotes To Your Advantage

Personal anecdotes are a great way to show someone that you aren’t afraid to open up to them. Remember that not every story is conversation-worthy. This is especially true if you haven’t reached a particularly intimate level yet.

Make sure any anecdotes you share are relevant to the conversation. You don’t want to interrupt the flow of a lively conversation by telling random a story that catches the other person off guard. Also, try to choose anecdotes that portray you positively. An amusing or touching anecdote is great, but choosing one that showcases your best qualities is even better!

No matter what anecdote or story you choose to tell, make it short. You don’t want to give the impression that you are self-absorbed. While every detail of what happened last Tuesday may be interesting to you, it might bore your partner. The person you are talking to will appreciate it if you don’t hog the conversation No matter how amusing the story, no one likes to listen to one that drags on forever. Most people have limited attention spans.

Listening Is Key

One of the best ways to improve your conversation skills is to master the art of listening.  Listening shows that you are interested and you value what they have to say.

Maintaining eye contact is a fantastic way to show people that you listening. However, there are other ways as well. For instance, make sure that you answer any questions you are asked appropriately. Similarly, ask follow-up questions that demonstrate you fully understand what a person has said to you.

Pay attention to a person’s tone, mood, and demeanor. For example if someone’s eyes light up when you ask them a certain question, or if they just can’t stop smiling when discussing a specific topic, don’t be too quick to change the subject.

Similarly, is someone seems to tense up at a certain point in a conversation, it may be your cue to steer things in another direction. These may seem like little details. However, they are key for mastering how to carry on a conversation (without looking like an idiot!).

And, whatever you do, don’t take out your phone, check your watch, or interrupt someone while chatting. Sorry, no texting either. Any of these actions will make the other person think that you are disrespectful. Or, that you don’t really care about what they have to say.

How To Carry On A Conversation Made Easy

At the end of the day, the best way to carry on a rewarding conversation is to be as sincere and as relaxed as possible. Try your best to remain polite. Show interest in the other person. Be open and genuine. If you do these things, you shouldn’t have too much to worry about.

Next time you talking to someone, give a few of these ideas a go. And remember, as with any skill, learning how to carry on a conversation takes practice. So, don’t give up – keep talking!

For tons of message templates and ideas on how to craft little missiles of seduction, check out our best-selling eBook French Seduction Made Easy. Learn how to write flirty good morning text messages that make your partner crave you.

Claudia Cox

Claudia Cox is a modern communication expert who gives singles and couples alike the tools they need to improve their relationships. She is the creator of The Text Weapon Texting Club, and the author of French Seduction Made Easy. She loves the outdoors, baking tasty treats for friends, and of course, texting.
Learn more about French Seduction Made Easy.

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