The most extraverted people know that, when it comes to relating to others, most of the time the least important thing is to have a topic of conversation planned. In fact, sometimes just trying to stick to a script makes the dialogue less than smooth, and a lot of uncomfortable silences get in the way.
However, for most people the fact of conversing without having a definite message in mind is something strange, difficult to carry out. It may be uninteresting from a certain perspective to interact in this way, but at other times it is a precious resource: initiating conversations easily has many advantages in certain contexts.
In this article we will review some tips on how to start a conversation without having a specific topic .
How to start a conversation without a topic
We have to take into account that, when we start thinking about what a conversation is, we tend not to think exactly about the real dialogues that take place in our day-to-day life. Instead, we think about script or novel dialogues, exchanges of opinions that aim, in most cases, to create a clear account of what is happening, to show exchanges of ideas that are coherent.
But in real life, most conversations are full of imperfections. For example, there are redundant expressions, circles, and many, many changes of topic . This need not be bad; it is a reflection of the dynamic character of the human mind, and in fact, when they occur, we often do not notice these imperfections.
Well, when we start a conversation without having a definite topic prepared, we can exploit this principle on which most conversations are based. It doesn’t matter so much the content as the form . Let’s see how to do it.
1. Don’t be afraid to make a fool of yourself
The fact that it is not necessary to have a topic of conversation to start talking to someone does not make the first impression unimportant.
So whatever you do, you should do something that doesn’t make you look vulnerable or fall prey to feelings of ridicule. Any action, no matter how bizarre, is very likely not to seem so if it’s clear that you’re doing exactly what you want to do .
However, you should be aware that starting a conversation without having planned a topic is always, to a greater or lesser extent, a challenge, so it will require you to leave your comfort zone. If you talk about a subject you know a lot about, you will feel safe, but to start talking about it by changing the subject must flow with the conversation , and that requires adaptation.
2. Talk about a shared reference
To start a conversation with someone you know little or not at all, it is good to point out a topic linked to a fact that you both may know. If you talk about a movie, you won’t know if the other person will pick up on the reference, but if you talk about something that is close by, you will.
For example, you can comment on a visual element that has caught your attention. This comment, as long as it is not rude, is a good start, because even though it is clear that it will not be the backbone of the conversation (it is not so talkative) it is based on something that both sender and receiver can notice , assuming they are in the same space or seeing the same thing.
3. Ask simple questions
So that it is not a monologue, ask simple questions, referring to experiences, for example. This will open up a range of different topics for you to choose from depending on how interesting they are.
4. Talking about the everyday is not a sin
There’s nothing wrong with talking about the little details of everyday life. For example, the impression we get from a certain neighborhood, the kind of food we like… In the end, if every conversation were about very abstract topics, life would be very boring. Besides, talking about this makes it very easy to change the subject and create stories that the other person can identify with .
5. Adapt to their non-verbal language
This is a little trick that will help you make the other person feel more comfortable. Part of the non-verbal language reference that expresses, and imitates . If you see that it is one that expresses a defensive attitude, imitate it, but take it towards a similar one that is less tense, less hostile. Unconsciously, he will also imitate you, until both of you are in a much more relaxed non-verbal posture and language style.
None of this will make sense if you assume that by reading a series of directions you have already learned how to do it. Take those ideas as a reference, and carry them out in your day-to-day life. Repetition creates skill.