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Saturday, May 2, 2009

Conversation Tips

We engage in numerous conversations in our daily lives. Thus, it is important to learn good habits for engaging in a conversation.

Here are three conversation tips that can help. They focus on Listening, Leading as well as identifying Non Verbal Cues.

Listen and Pause before Speaking

When you are listening to someone, it is often times a good idea to pause before you start talking. When you are listening, if you could wait just a little bit longer before you start speaking, you might find that the other person has not finished. They will often speak just a little bit longer, and what you're doing is that you're demonstrating really good listening skills when you do this.

Secondly, you are showing the other person that you care enough to really listen. When you pause before speaking, that silence, even if it lasts for five seconds, creates anticipation and also encourages the other person to pay attention. This adds to the depth of your conversation.

Lead and Pace with Emotion

It is good when you are having a conversation, to take charge and lead a conversation. Lead a conversation with pace and with emotion. You achieve this by speaking with enthusiasm.

By smiling, and by speaking with energy and enthusiasm, you become almost irresistible to the other person. He or she will not be able to resist following you. Leading with emotion and sets the pace for a new level of interest and excitement.

Address Non Verbal Feedback

The final conversational tip is to pay attention and to address non verbal feedback that exists in all conversations.

Lets say that you are talking to someone, and that person says, "That's very interesting, I'm really interested in that." But if you really pay attention, you can see that the voice tone and body language does not match what she says. So by paying attention to the non verbal feedback, you will know that she is not really interested.

So how do you address that? You can address it directly if you know the person well. You could say "Well, you don't sound very interested, would you like to talk about something different?" or you could simply change the topic of conversation automatically because you know that the other person really isn't that interested. So that is what i mean by addressing non verbal feedback.

Don't just pay attention to what the other person is saying, Watch and adjust your approach depending on the body language.

Utilize these conversation tips in your everyday life in order to become a better conversationalist. If you are interested in learning more about this topic, you might consider checking out my post on Social Situations and Small Talk. You could also check out my post on First Impressions as well as the followup post on How to Make a Great First Impression.


Michele said...

I'm one who definitely needs this advice. I love to talk and sometimes get ADD with my conversations. I think of something and must blurt it out right away, and if I don't' I can't focus on the conversation I'm having. It's ridiculous and became worse after having my daughter.

Would you be interested in a link exchange? mtracy18.blogspot.com

Interpersonal Communication Skills said...

Good point regarding the non verbal feedback. A person's body language usually speaks more volume than the words that are spoken.

jh said...

Great post. Listening is one of the hardest things to do with other people. I think many people are very anxious that what they will say will not get heard but if you consciously calm yourself and tell yourself that there is plenty of time in the conversation for you to say what you will need to say then you can let go and listen. Often, when I do this, I end up not needing to say half of what I thought I needed to at first.

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