When you struggle with social anxiety and feeling awkward around people, just getting words out of your mouth is stressful enough. Add to that trying to be entertaining, attentive and suave? Oof.
It’s one thing to work up the courage to talk to other people.
It’s a whole ‘nother ball game to be someone people actually like talking to.
But contrary to what many people think, being an enjoyable conversationalist isn’t elusive magic. In fact, it all boils down to a few key moves that will keep them coming back for more, all while letting you relax and have a lot more fun!
6 Easy Ways To Be Someone Everyone Likes Talking To
Seems super basic, but don’t skip it.
Letting a genuine smile take over your face is a great way to put the person you’re talking to at ease. It shows you’re friendly and welcoming which encourages them to be friendly right back. This helps reduce your anxiety while creating a relaxing atmosphere that fosters fun, memorable connection.
Btw, body language is a huge part of your social environment, so make sure to set yourself up for success.
#2. Actually listen to them (like, for reals).
Yeah, I know you hear them, but are you truly listening to them?
Hearing is when your brain registers there’s sound. I hate to break it to ya, but there’s not much skill involved in that. True listening (or what I call “active listening”), on the other hand, is when you listen, understand and participate in what someone is sharing with you.
Participating can have many forms, but common ones are asking questions, using your body language to react appropriately, or sharing similar tidbits from your life or experiences to reinforce you’re tracking with them. There are tons of other ways to participate, so exploring what feels natural and good for you is a great social exercise.
Active listening is one of the single most powerful ways to reduce anxiety and awkwardness while growing a genuine connection with someone, so don’t be afraid to try it out!
Want more on active listening? Download my free guide for all the juicy deets.
#3. Be a team player.
Just like you don’t want to be a ball hog when you’re shooting hoops, you don’t want to hog the conversation space when you’re chatting with someone.
Pay attention to the flow. Has there been space for both people to contribute to the conversation, or have you been monologuing a bit? Do you notice the other person growing quiet and not talking? It may be because you haven’t given them room to participate.
If you see this happening, don’t worry, you can get back on track! Create room in the conversation by asking them thoughtful questions that encourage more than a “yes” or “no” response, then give them time to respond. Want some great conversation starters that won’t bore people to death? Girl, I gotchu.
#4. Be willing to open up.
One of the most powerful ways to bond with someone is to learn about them, but no one can do that if you don’t give them anything to work with!
While you don’t have to read them your entire life story, practice generosity by opening up and sharing the real you, especially when someone asks you a question. You can tell a story about something cool that happened to you, share about a hobby you have, let them in on one of your goals, or talk about a place you’d love to visit and why.
Don’t worry about needing to ramble on forever (in fact, it’s best if you don’t), but prepping some ideas of what you love to share about yourself makes it so much easier and more natural to drop them in conversation.
Remember, your story and experiences are a huge part of what makes you YOU, so don’t be afraid to shine!
#5. Be inquisitive.
Caveat to #4: it’s not all about you!
Avoid falling into the trap of going on and on about yourself by strategically asking the other person interesting questions. This is especially helpful for combatting anxiety and awkwardness because it shifts the focus away from you and onto them!
Pop on your detective hat and see what interesting things you can learn about your new friend. What do they love to do during their down time? What’s their dream travel destination? Do they have a talent people would never guess? Get ‘em talking – you never know what totally awesome stuff you might learn.
#6. Embrace the fart.
Okokok, you don’t have to actually fart. But now that I have your attention, hear me out.
For some reason, tons of people think they need to be perfectly clever, sophisticated, charming and faux pas-free when it comes to conversation. If someone’s telling you that this is the way you’ve got to be, turn around and RUN.
The truth? DO THE EXACT OPPOSITE.
“Perfect people” (in quotations because perfect people don’t really exist) are mega intimidating and, if we’re being honest, kinda annoying to be around. We don’t want to hang with them, and we definitely don’t want to give off that vibe ourselves!
Instead of killing yourself trying to look like you have it all together, use your energy to create a safe place for people to be real. The best way to do that? Be real yourself!
Make a mistake? Do something embarrassing? Say the wrong thing? Go with it! Laugh at yourself, turn it into a joke, or use it as a launch pad to break the ice with a funny story. No matter how you harness your oops moment, use it to your advantage. When someone is real, it’s mega relatable, mega enjoyable, and guess what? It’s mega memorable too, and all those things together make conversational and connection magic.
You can do this!
Good conversations are totally within your reach, as long as you harness the right skill set.
If you feel overwhelmed when it comes to successfully connecting with others, there’s hope! By focusing on small, actionable steps like the ones above, you can move from feelings of terror, frustration and helplessness to empowerment, genuine connection and joy.
No step is too “basic” or “simple” when it comes to ditching anxiety or awkwardness. If it moves you closer to the person you dream of being, it’s a winner!
And guess what? So are you.
Looking for more in-depth guidance and strategies for blasting through your social anxiety and awkwardness once and for all? My exclusive 36-page guide is my free gift to you. Just tell me where to send it.
Love free stuff but craving a solution that’s tailored to your personality, unique struggles, and precious goals? Pull up a chair, girl. I can’t wait to empower you!