As an introvert, talking to others doesn’t always come naturally. It’s hard and awkward. Often, when I go to speak, my words come out disjointed and jumbled. I struggle to put my thoughts in a logical order, so that other people can understand what I’m trying to say. I end up feeling very incoherent and a little embarrassed.
One of the reasons that conversation can be hard for introverts is that we overthink everything we are saying, even before we speak! We wonder if our words will come out the way we mean them to. How our words will make the other person feel. Or even worse, that our words will make us look stupid or uninteresting. Whew – all that overthinking can be exhausting!
It’s even worse when I do want to talk to someone, but I don’t know what to say. There’s been times in the past when I turned to talk to someone and my mind went blank. But I’ve come to realize that I don’t need my words to come out perfectly. It’s taken time, but I’m getting better at starting conversations. It helps that I’ve come up with a few different ways to start conversations.
Here are some conversation starters you can use the next time you have to talk to someone and don’t know what to say.
Keep It Simple
Here are some standard questions to get you started.
1. Compliment the other person on something they are wearing – a jacket, a necklace, their shoes.
2. What are your plans for this weekend?
3. What did you do last weekend?
4. Do you have any kids? How old are they? What are their names?
5. Do you have any pets?
6. Do you have any siblings?
Travel and Vacations
Some of the best things in life come from experiences, including travel. Even if a person hasn’t travelled a lot, they probably have a place they would love to visit in the future.
7. Do you have any upcoming travel/vacation plans?
8. Where would you like to travel in the future?
9. What has been your favourite place that you have travelled to?
10. If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be and why?
11. What do you usually like to do when you are on vacation?
12. Do you prefer packaged tours or booking everything yourself? Why?
13. What countries have you travelled to?
Conversation Tip #1: Avoid asking too many questions. It can make the other person feel like they are being interrogated! When you are asking the other person a question, think about how you would answer it. Share your answer to keep the conversation going.
Talking about entertainment is a classic conversation topic. The best part is that because new shows or movies are always coming out, you will always have something new to talk about.
14. What upcoming movie are you looking forward to being released?
15. What tv series are you watching?
16. What is your favourite move/tv show/book? Why?
17. What was the last book/blog that you read?
18. What concerts or theatre shows have you been to?
19. What type of music do you listen to? (pop, rap, country, etc)
20. What’s your favourite radio station?
Do you want an easy way to remember over 100 different conversation starters? If so, then check out these 102 Conversation Starter Cards – available now in my Etsy shop! They are so simple to use – simply download and print!
Getting to Know You Better
These are great questions to get to know a little bit more about a person. These questions go beyond the basics that are normally covered in conversation.
21. Where did you go to school?
22. How long have you lived in (insert name of town or city)?
23. Are you a morning person or a night owl?
24. What’s the first thing you notice when you meet people?
25. Are you an introvert or an extrovert? (You may actually surprise people when you tell them you are an introvert!)
26. What is your biggest fear?
27. What is your biggest pet peeve?
28. What is the biggest purchase you most regret?
29. What is your biggest regret in life?
Conversation Tip #2: Listen to what the other person is saying. Then, follow up with questions on what they have just said. It really is okay to ask! It shows that you are listening, which makes the other person feel like you care.
Hobbies are a great way to find out what people are interested in. You never know when you will meet someone else with the same hobbies as you.
30. Do you like to cook?
31. Do you have any hobbies? What are they?
32. Do you play any musical instruments?
33. Have you ever taken any dancing lessons?
34. What do you like to do in your spare time?
It’s so much fun to learn what people were like as children. The answers can definitely surprise you at times!
35.What’s your favourite childhood memory?
36. Where did you grow up?
37. What was your favourite thing to do as a kid?
38. What was your favourite toy as a kid?
39. Did you have any pets when you were a kid?
Conversation Tip #3: Know when to stop. If the other person is giving yes or no answers, it may be a sign that they don’t want to talk or they don’t want to talk about that subject. It’s okay to ask if there is something they would rather talk about.
“If You Could”
These questions are so much fun! You can be silly, imaginative and so creative with your answers!
40. If you could have one super power, what would it be?
41. If you could choose your own name, what would it be? Why?
42. If you could be any animal in the world, what would it be and why?
43. If you could have one dream come true, what would it be?
44. If you could ask your future self one question, what would it be?
45. If you could live at any point in time (past, present, future), what would it be?
Who doesn’t like to talk about their favourite things? I know I do!
46. What’s your favourite season?
47. What’s your favourite store to shop at?
48. What’s your favourite colour?
49. What’s your favourite restaurant?
50. What’s your favourite dish to order at a restaurant?
Conversation Tip #4: Make a conversation more interesting by sharing your unique perspective. The more you are interested or excited about what you are talking about, the more the other person will be interested.
Until my next blog post, here’s wishing you lots of joy and happiness!