Sunday, 28 October 2012

Day 28: Small Talk

Ok, I really need to get a post up!  I've had a topic planned for days, but no picture ready.  And I'm not sure what I really want to say about small talk because I'm not very good at it.  Oh, I'm rambling again...sorry.

But here are a few of the lessons I've learned about small talk (I've also learned that every single time I go to type "lessons", I end up with "lesions" instead):

1. Say, "How are you?" And mean it.  And if someone says it to you first, answer with sincerity, then say it back.  Can you believe I actually had to consciously remind myself of this for a long time?

2. If you don't know what to say, ask a question.  Preferably about the other person. As in, "I love your shoes! Where did you get them?" Or, "how do you get your kids to listen so well?"  I have one friend who was such a blessing in my teen years.  She went out of her way to talk to me.  I asked myself one day why she was so easy to talk to.  It was because she kept asking me questions.  And they were the kind of questions that slowly led me to be more and more vulnerable with her, and really feel like I had a friend who cared.  She is a sweetheart.

3. Don't talk only about yourself.  It took me a lot longer to learn this particular lesson.  I'm still learning it.  As sweet as my friend was, we could have been much closer if I had made the same effort.  That's where the questions come in handy.

And that's it.  With these three tips, I can pretty much talk to anyone about anything.  I do struggle in big groups, or if I'm tired or head-achy, but most of the time, I'm ok.  Oh, and teenagers are difficult.  Teenagers scare me!  I never know what to say to them.

Do you have any small-talk tips?  How do you start a conversation?

1 comment:

  1. Great tips, Jo. I had a boss years ago that always told me to find one thing in common when talking to people - the Elvis painting above the couch, your same heritage, anything that would help you connect with people. AND the biggest lesson she taught me was to always call service people (waiters, sales staff) by the name on their tag - I still do that 30 years later and now my kids do it too.


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