You’ve put yourself out there and tried talking to new people.
You’ve smiled, listened, and were interested.
But you’re still not getting the response you want. You’re not quite feeling the connection.
I mean, maybe you do alright talking sometimes, but then someone else enters the conversation and immediately has everyone’s attention. It seems they effortlessly have charm and wit and confidence.
It can make you feel worthless.
You might think, “what’s the point?” Because it seems others are so much more effective than you socially. And that you’ll never compare.
Are you just doing something wrong?
But it’s likely not what you think.
There’s a simple fix though if you are, and anyone can do it.
Do you sometimes struggle to have meaningful conversations?
Like, you get stuck in chit chat mode and just talk those trivial topics to death.
To the point where things start to feel stale…and maybe you’re looking for an exit.
(And you worry they are too.)
Don’t you wish you could make the vibe more exciting? More interesting? So maybe things could move to a deeper level with this person?
Well, a great way amp up interactions and bond with someone new is to introduce emotion into the conversation.
And a slick way to do that is noticing and commenting on “emotional hot buttons.” But you have to be observant to make use of them.
So in today’s article, I’ll give you an example of this technique in action.
Then I’ll explain how you can use it.
Do you worry what people would think of you if they found out what you’re really like?
Maybe you like World of Warcraft?
Or you’re into Legos?
Do you like anime or science fiction or rare insects?
Or maybe it’s some other hobby or interest that isn’t so mainstream…
Is there a way to be completely honest about these “weird” passions of ours without people thinking less of us?
Because I won’t lie…
Sometimes people can quickly stereotype you in a negative category in their mind. And it can be hard to break out of that category.
So here’s a couple tips to prevent that from happening while still being your full beautifully-weird self.
Do you often feel ignored when you say something?
Maybe you speak up in a group but no one pays attention. Then someone interrupts over you and instantly has the spotlight.
Or it seems everyone is always speaking over each other; their ideas get noticed but when you try…nothing.
Plenty of my readers have mentioned this problem. And in the TED talk titled “How to Speak So People Want to Listen,” Julian Treasure gives great tips to stop being ignored. Julian is an expert on sound and speech so he’s someone to listen to in this area.
I’ve included the talk below and summarized his main points. But I’ve also included insights of my own on ways to be heard and respected in more casual settings.
How can you tell if you’re boring someone to tears in a conversation?
- Maybe you notice them looking everywhere but at you
- Maybe their tone of voice screams “I’d rather be anywhere else right now”
- Maybe they fall asleep on the front of a ship while you’re discussing the cosmos
But are you really boring people in your conversations or just imagining it? How can you tell? And how can you be more engaging and interesting instead?
Here are 7 unexpected boredom-inducing warning signs to look out for in YOUR conversations. If you’re doing one or more of these, it’s very likely people are leaving chats with you wishing they could have those minutes of their life back.
Back in my early college days, I was very lonely.
I wasn’t popular in high school and starting fresh with new people was hard. I remember how impossible it seemed to impress strangers enough on campus to be liked and make friends.
Luckily, I had a friend in my roommate. He had his issues with shyness too. But for some reason we suffered through our social isolation separately, even though we lived in the same apartment. We just didn’t talk about it much.
Each too ashamed I guess.
Eventually, I got fed up being ignored socially and started looking for ways to impress strangers and “be liked” by them. And I was sort of successful. I got to the point where I could stand out more and make a good first impression.
This was nice, but for years I still felt cursed. Because even though I could make a good first impression, I was seldom able to turn that into deeper friendships. It’s like I was stuck in acquaintance mode with everyone I met. There was always someone else they connected with more than me.
What I eventually discovered is, I wasn’t doing the ONE thing most important to form friendships.
Are you missing out on friendships too by neglecting this one critical element?