Do you know people who just come across as being capable of talking to absolutely anybody? Do you tend to look at them with a sense of jealousy that they can do this while you struggle?
Well, while some individuals are just better with conversations naturally, it is often the case that people have had to work at their skills. It is not something that they can just do.
But this simple fact opens up a rather interesting question. Just how to be more talkative and then, as a result, better in conversations?
Well, the tips we offer below will help you improve your general conversation skills. We aren’t going to say that they will completely transform your talking skills, but we do feel that you should spot a significant difference in how you feel when conversing with people.
Each tip listed below can make a huge impact on the way you talk to people. We do recommend trying each one to see the difference they make. However, it’s worth remembering that you will not be able to change your current way of talking in an instant. This all takes time, but we promise you will have a lot of fun along the way.
Tip 1: Work at Small Talk
If you thought small talk was useless, then it’s not. Instead, small talk is a powerful tool capable of breaking down all sorts of barriers. Also, it works as a wonderful ice-breaker when conversing with people and it’s a great starting point when learning how to become a master at talking to strangers.
View the concept of small talk as being something of a warm-up for the main conversational event. Use it to find some type of common ground. It doesn’t matter how apparently pointless or mundane the small talk may be. It all plays a role, and can help build your confidence in talking to individuals.
If you still feel unsure about making small talk, then reading a good article on this topic can be highly beneficial for you.
Tip 2: Lower Your Standards
So, you will probably find yourself sitting there wondering what on earth we mean by ‘lowering your standards’. That’s understandable, as it can mean a multitude of things, so let’s be more specific.
A problem faced by most people who struggle with how to be more talkative is overthinking things. People think too much about what they plan on saying that it creates a feeling of anxiety.
This anxiety can come from different angles. You may feel that what you want to say is boring. Perhaps you worry that people won’t understand what you want to say?
No matter the root of the anxiety, often the problem is having high standards as to what you perceive to be boring or pointless. You give those thoughts too much power, so people then clam up and don’t participate.
Lowering your standards about what you see as boring or mundane makes a huge difference.
What you need to do is to look at adopting an approach where you say what is on your mind. Well, not exactly everything if the thing on your mind is rude or completely inappropriate. A sense of still understanding what is viewed as respectable and acceptable is important.
Start small. Make an observation as to what is going on. That may sound boring to you, but it gets you into the conversation, and who knows what will then happen?
Tip 3: Break an Awkward Silence
People who feel anxious about participating in conversations will often fear those awkward silences that may occur at any point. Well, you are not alone. However, you can also do something to remove some of the power connected to those silences.
The problem with these silences is that the participants in the conversation can get to a point where they look at one another hoping somebody says something. But as the silence grows, so does your anxiety. Then, you give the prospect of those silences more power.
So, what do you do?
This is the time to be brave and step forward during these times. Say something positive about what is going on around you at the time. Alternatively, share your thoughts on a subject no matter how strange it may seem.
The relief people will feel at this awkward silence being broken will change the entire energy. Also, you remove the power the silence has, and you won’t fear things the same in the future.
Tip 4: Try a Casual Question
People who are comfortable in conversations will often understand the importance of interjecting with casual questions at different times. This laid-back conversational skill can ease tension, which most people feel in some way while chatting with individuals.
So, what do we mean by a casual question? Well, it can involve pretty much anything, but how about these examples?
- Has anybody seen this Netflix series?
- Does anybody know what the food is like at….?
- Where are you going on vacation this year?
- Can anybody suggest…..?
The key here is you are asking for some sort of input from people by asking them a question where you want their opinion. Don’t ask anything that requires too much thought as that can create its own tension.
Keep it basic, and try to just drop it into a relaxed conversation. You will be amazed at how people will react in a positive way, and it can even take the conversation off into a whole new direction.
Tip 5: Practice
Do you know how to be more talkative and better in conversations? Practice.
You see, when we think too much about conversations, it puts us off even interacting with people. We effectively shut down and remove ourselves from chats as much as possible.
Avoiding conversations increases anxiety. The problem here is that the more you avoid, the greater the anxiety becomes.
In the end, you get to a point where there’s this constant feeling of dread and fear surrounding talking to people. Sadly, it can start to infiltrate all aspects of your life.
So, what do you do in order to counteract this? The answer is simple, practice.
If you feel anxious about anything, then you have this curve where the anxiety builds until it reaches a peak, and then it starts to wane. However, when we avoid doing something thanks to anxiety, we only experience the building of the anxiety, and we never experience the natural drop in anxiety that takes place later.
You need to practice talking to people to get through that anxiety curve. The more you do it, the lower that anxiety curve becomes, and the more comfortable you feel at talking to people.
Now, we aren’t telling you to go ahead and become some sort of social butterfly. Instead, you need to start small, so these examples might help.
- When buying something in a store, say something to the cashier.
- If waiting on a bus, ask the person next to you a question.
- If ordering a meal, ask for advice on what you should order.
- Talk to people around your home when out for a walk.
When you stop and think about the number of times during a single day where you could enter into a conversation, then it should be easy to practice your skills.
Remember, this is not some deep philosophical conversation about the wonders of life. We are talking about something nice and simple without stress or pressure attached to it.
Tip 6: Elaborate on Answers
This is a great tip to follow. If an individual asks you a question, then try not to reply with just either a yes or no. The person you are conversing with has provided you with an opportunity to speak, so grasp that opportunity with both hands.
Again, an example works wonders at explaining what we mean.
It’s common when you go back to work after the weekend for people to ask something along the lines of ‘how was your weekend?’
Now, you could just reply with a simple comment about how it was good. But that’s boring and won’t help you develop your conversation skills.
So, what we suggest is you take your stock answer of it being good, and expand on it. Tell them why it was good. Mention something you did over the weekend even if it was just watching some series with popcorn.
Once again, if you provide more information at this time, then it’s more likely the individual who asked can then reciprocate with something else. This is the way a relaxed and informal conversation can open up and develop.
But here’s the best thing. You will suddenly realize you had a nice, calm conversation and everything went well. It gives you some positive feedback, and as our confidence in our ability to converse grows, then you will automatically learn how to be more talkative.
Tip 7: Share in Line with Other People
While in a conversation, you will tend to find that one person shares more than others. This will often reflect their confidence in conversing with others. Of course it can also indicate they like the sound of their own voice, so it can sometimes be a fine line.
But there is also a negative side to all of this from your perspective.
You want to learn how to be more talkative but you are trying to converse with people who will not let you speak? It’s impossible, and it’s hardly going to help you to become better with talking to people.
This is where you need to take steps to counteract this, but to do so at a level that is comfortable for you.
Take your lead from the person who is sharing the most in a conversation. Listen to what they say, and then ask them a question or make a comment in line with their main subject.
Again, let’s go back to an example.
You are talking to a friend who tells you they went fishing over the weekend, and they share about where they went and how many fish they caught. Now, if you just reply to this by saying ‘that’s nice’ then the conversation almost ends from your perspective.
So don’t reply like that.
Instead, ask a question directly about fishing, or if you have an experience of your own relating to fishing, then share it at this time. Tell them about going away with your father and where you would visit. Alternatively, even if you simply own fish in a tank at home, then tell them about your love of fish.
The key is in expanding on a simple answer of only a few words. By doing that, you are reducing your opportunity to be more talkative.
Anybody Can Do This
You need to know that anybody can learn how to be more talkative. The tips listed above can be used by any individual no matter their current confidence levels.
We are not talking about completely changing your approach to conversing with others. That would be too difficult, and also put too much stress on your shoulders. So, take it easy.
Please keep it firmly in your mind that most people struggle with conversations. At times, even those individuals who appear to be talkative are being powered by their nerves. Yes, anxiety can even make people overtalk, so this shows how difficulties in talking can come out in different ways.
Knowing how to be more talkative is a skill you can easily learn, and that will improve all aspects of your life, including your communication in marriage. However, it does take time if you plan on mastering the art of being better in conversations.
Keep in mind you will not be the only individual struggling with this. Simply knowing others find themselves in the same anxiety laden basket makes a huge difference. In saying that, having the understanding that you need to work on your conversation skills, and having the willingness to do that, is key to your future success.
Through both practice and opening yourself up to new situations, you will improve your conversational skills. Honestly, it will all simply sneak up on you while you remain blissfully unaware that your old anxieties surrounding talking to people have magically disappeared.
Now isn’t that a future that is bright and something to look forward to?
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