6 Ways to Become a Better Conversationalist.
Updated: Jul 26
How to have better conversations?
Let's get this conversation started!
Leading on from the last blog about Being Interested in People for better conversations, I thought as to who would we most likely will have better conversations with. Like-minded people, yes. And perhaps our soulmates.
If we think about it, if we’re with our soulmates, we should have a good conversation with them. Not only would they be a conversationalist, but also, we should equally be good conversationalists for each other. But not only should we be good conversationalists for our soulmates, but shouldn't we just generally be good conversationalists? But how do we do that?
Here are 6 things you can and should do to become a better conversationalist!
You’d be surprised to know that being a good speaker or talker does not equate to being a good conversationalist. To hold a conversation, one should be able to listen. In fact, the best conversations happen when both parties are equally open and ready to listen to one another. You wouldn't want to end up attacked by another person who wouldn't want to listen to you but instead tries to force their thoughts on you.
A nice tip is: whenever you’re in a conversation, open yourself to whatever others have to say. You don’t have to agree with everything they have to say, but instead, open your mind to learning new things. Sometimes, listening requires setting aside your immediate opinions and reactions to what is said, and waiting for them to finish. Listening is not only the act of listening but also understanding and digesting what is being said.
Being present doesn’t only mean you have to physically be there, it means that you’ve given your undivided attention to knowing the person you’re talking to. To be interested in them, to want to know about the things that make them think. Try not to think about things unrelated to either of you or unrelated to what is being discussed. Be interested and be curious, ask them questions.
Ask good questions
Everyone knows how to ask questions, sure, but how do we ask better questions? Ask questions that make the other person talk about what they think on said topic. Asking a yes or no question leads to a dead-end conversation and it would be best to avoid that. Ask a question that makes them think, be descriptive, and perhaps elaborate on it. But not hard of a question enough to make them uninterested.
Tip: Try asking them questions like “Why do you think that?” or “How’s that like?” Try to make them elaborate on things without pressuring them.
You can say “I don't know”
A lot of people feel that they should know things. It’s okay to not know things, it’s alright to not know the answer to a lot of things. You should be okay with that and also be okay if people can't answer your questions because the truth of the matter is no one person knows everything. That’s why we research, we communicate, why we ask… It’s to learn more about what’s around us.
Let the conversation flow
One amazing thing about talking with like-minded people is the things you say to each other inspire stories and ideas. However, you don't necessarily have to be like-minded in the first place to have a good flow of conversation. You just have to be open to talk about whatever conversation comes up. If and when a topic you would rather not talk about is brought up, then let them know. Let the conversation flow and go along.
Tip: Thoughts and words will come to you, don't fixate on any one idea, let it come, let it go. Don’t think about it too much, speak your thoughts, and if it doesn't work out, go on to the next one.
Be open to others’ thoughts
Conversation is a two-way street, you don't always expect to talk to people who will agree with you. That means everyone involved will have to listen to what the other is saying. You can be constructive towards each other and discuss why you differ in opinions, as long as all involved are not forcing anything on anyone, the difference can still lead to a very good conversation.
We sometimes act as if we're fully there and feign listening, when in reality we can't wait for them to stop talking so we get our turn. Let's try and stop that by practicing these 6 simple tips and see if you get better and more meaningful conversations in your everyday life. Better yet, try these on your next talk on Tin Can!
Remember, you don't have to act like you're interested on a topic when you're actually interested in it. 😉
Tin Can is a place where you can freely express your thoughts, a place where you can openly talk about things, and where you can hold a conversation. On here, we hope you'd be able to hold a lovely conversation with other Tin Casters and find like-minded friends! Talk about anything and everything under the sun! The important thing is you listen to each other!
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