Great conversation skills create self confidence and the feeling that the person you are talking with "knows" you, understands you, can relate to you and what you are saying, and can trust you. With a little practice people you are talking with will feel they have known you for years even if you were perfect strangers five minutes ago.
There are many tips that will help you become more confident when you walk into a room of strangers. Let your brain do all the work as your mouth follows along. Here are 10 techniques to increase your self confidence and be ready to mingle with strangers.
Things You'll Need
- Preparation time for the social event.
- Conversation skill preparation - Stay away from the yes/no conversation.
-When you see this happening it means that one person is talking and just want affirmation from you. -Don't settle for this small talk and gracefully change the subject of the conversation. -You know more than you admit. Sharpen your knowledge of what is happening in the world today by reading newspapers or really focusing on your news link on your computer, what your position is at work and what your business is all about, the details about your hobby, etc. -When you encounter a situation in your day consciously think about how you could use this in a conversation.
Use this information to turn the style of conversion from one person talking to an interaction between 2 or more individuals.
- Make conversation by telling a story - As you approach a group of individuals you can be confident with carrying on a good conversation when you can tell a story.
-In order to 'work the room' you should be prepared with many different types of stories you can share with others. -The stories can derive from tales of funny experiences you've had, how you salvaged your vacation when it rained the whole week, how to do (or not to do) an at home project, etc. -Even a fabricated story will give individuals, with whom you're talking, a reason to remain in your company. -Telling a good story is an great skill to acquire because since the power of a good story makes for interesting conversation and amuse your listeners but also will persuade or sell.
This conversation technique is sure to make a lasting impression.
- Start your conversation with a smile - People are more prone to include you into their conversation is your look positive.
-The type of greeting depends on the person your having a conversation with, the circumstances surrounding the conversation and the relationship between you. -The best start to any interaction is with a smile. It lets the other person know you are pleased to see him/her and will result in the smile returned.
A smile great way to start any conversation.
- Conversation with your eyes - Eye contact is an essential element so your are perceived as confident.
-Keep your focus on whom you are talking with, and everyone in the conversation, to indicate you are fully engaged in the conversation and listening to what is being said. -Maintain a 'natural' eye contact to indicate acceptance of the other person and acknowledgement that you understand what is being said. You do not have to agree with it, just that your are hearing what is being said. -Keep looking at those around the group in the conversation when you are speaking, showing your confidence in what you are contributing to the conversation. - Eye to eye conversation is a sign that the interaction is going well.
When there is a lack of eye contact it tends to show distrust and lack of interest.
- Personalize the conversation - It is great to talk with someone who remembers your name. Reciprocate this courtesy.
-When you participate in a conversation, everybody wants their name to be known. -Taking the extra step to remember a name indicates that you are interested in that person. -When you first meet someone make an association between their name and something that is outstanding about them. This exercise will help you remember their name.
Use their name a couple of times in the beginning of the conversation will help you remember, also.
- Good conversation starters - There may be times when the conversation slows down. When it does ask a question to get it going again.
-Ask general questions about one or more individuals involve in the discussion. -Keep the questions open ended so there is more than a yes/no answer. -People do like to talk about themselves so as them about recent movies they have seen, and follow up that question with subsequent questions like. 'What did you think of it?', 'Who was in it?', etc. -"How do you know the hosts?" is a perfect last resort question. Use it to stimulate the conversation.
Keep the questions light and non-invasive and then be an attentive listener to their answers.
- Listening may be better than talking - Do not feel like you need to be the only one carrying the conversation.
- Listening is just as important as talking. -Interrupting is rude. Although there may be overlap of sentences do not cut someone off in the middle of expressing their thought. -Your patience to talk will show the other people in your conversation that you are interested in what they are saying by not interrupting.
Use the time you are listening to formulate questions or comments about what they are talking about.
- Conversational humor - Kidding around, a little, will lift any tension during a conversation.
-Interesting and funny quotes or facts can lighten things up, and make way for things to talk about. During your conservation preparation process read quotes and find trivia that would pertain to the social event you will be attending.
Use this conversation technique to keep the conversation going or to put others at ease when the talking get intense or stops.
- Conversation mishaps -- We all make mistakes so do not let that make you recede into the background.
-There will be times you slur words, stutter, or even mispronounce certain words. -Be open to ask if you're saying the word properly. -If you lose your train of thought when speaking excuse yourself and let someone else express their thoughts as you re-assemble yours. You can always jump back into the conversation later.
Be humble. These mishaps happen to everyone so laugh about it and move on with confidence.
- Body language - Half of an effective conversation is the way you non-verbally communicate.
-What your body is saying can be louder than what you are talking about. -Use the above suggestions to make you feel more comfortable in a group situation. -Practice better non-verbal skills that are friendly and personable so you can approach the group with confidence. -Positive body language will create a better conversation for everyone.