In this Social Skills newsletter, we’re going to deal with possibly the BIGGEST problem that you may face when meeting new people and making friends.
In fact, it’s so frustrating that it can even get you to AVOID meeting new people altogether.
If you were like me, when I was trying to get my social life together, then you think that you’ll always have awkward silences, so you avoid talking to people and embarrassing yourself.
If you’re sick of awkward silences, then let me share with you some exciting discoveries I found, as I was hopelessly trying to figure it out for myself.
By the way, if you want to always be able to keep a conversation going, and never run out of things to say, be sure to check out chapter 4 of my eBook. You can try the eBook for 60 days, with no risk on your part.
Get it here: Get The Friends You Want – Risk Free Trial
Keeping the Conversation Going: What Doesn’t Work
Some people try to prepare topics in advance, so when they meet new friends, they would have stuff to talk about. As you might know, that doesn’t work.
Eventually, you’ll run out of these “prepared subjects.” Very often, they seem very irrelevant to the situation, and hard to mention in casual conversation.
Some people think that the solution is to keep jumping from subject to subject with no end. As soon as a tiny break in the conversation happens, they dive in and start talking about a new subject.
And… it’s just weird.
Bombarding people with a thousand subjects a minute doesn’t work.
You may have tried to fill the void in a conversation by talking about generic subjects like “the weather”. And you probably know that it’s even more awkward than the awkward silence!
You may have tried to talk about work or study, in detail. You figure, “hey, I have things to say about that, let’s just talk about it for an hour or so”.
The problem? It’s boring!
When people go out to meet others, they also want to relax and have fun. Serious subjects kill the fun.
Why We Run Out Of Things To Say
After a lot of study on the subject, and many years of observing how social life works, I came to the conclusion that we run out of things to say because of the following reasons:
We Filter Too Much: we try to only talk about subjects that sound interesting, fun, cool, impressive, and make us sound smart.
We also avoid subjects that would make us sound boring, weak, weird, or uncool.
And because of all that pressure to select the “right things to talk about”, we end up having nothing to say. Asking yourself “what would they think of me if I talk about this subject?” makes you get in your head, and before you know it, you already created an awkward silence.
We also don’t learn to get “in the mood for conversation.” Moving from focused-and-logical mode to social-and-fun mode, can be tough.
It’s especially hard if your work requires a great deal of focus for hours on end.
Awkward silences also happen when we don’t take the time to learn about the other person. If you don’t know what you have in common with someone, then it’s hard to know if what you’re going to say is interesting to them or not.
The First Step is to Learn A New Way To Talk To People
This will probably sound weird to you. it may even sound like the opposite of what would work.
I was really frustrated when I saw this used by some of the most socially successful people. These people not only had many friends, but they also had a lot of influence and power, and were also able to achieve great things in life.
What they would do is allow themselves to talk about ANY subject, even if it is dumb, uninteresting, boring, repetitive, stupid, uncool, unimpressive, embarrassing, something that makes them look weird, weak, unhealthy, immoral, or too emotional.
They would also talk about some interesting things from time to time, but the fact that they would be able to talk about those “non impressive” subjects used to SHOCK me.
Then I thought, “They can get away with this because they ALREADY have many friends…”
It happens that they were talking like that even before they made friends. Some of them just came from other cities, and managed to make friends anyway.
Now, you might be asking…
Why does it work? Why talking like that gets you friends?
That’s a fantastic question.
Socially successful people get away with this stuff because they know one thing:
If they reveal their imperfections, no matter how weird they are, other people will love them. Because people want to make friends with “imperfect people”.
Imperfect… Just like themselves!
If you’re trying to sound like you’re a perfect person, then you’re playing against yourself. You might even repel people from you… and therefore miss the opportunity to have all the friends you want, all the fun, and all the great get-togethers and friendly parties you want to be part of.
If you’re trying to look and sound perfect, then you’re probably getting yourself more and more isolated, and maybe even lonely.
If what you’ve tried in the past didn’t work, then it’s probably time to try something new.
You can start to allow yourself to talk about ANY subject that crosses your mind. No matter how weird, unimportant, irrelevant or uncool you used to think it is.
And that’s just the start. As soon as you try this, you’ll discover techniques that will make you sound very interesting no matter what you say. That will get you people’s attention, and make everyone wants to have you around.
That’s where the fun starts!
It’s like the snowball effect. As soon as I figured the first techniques to master conversations, many, many more techniques seemed to pop-up in my mind, and it became very easy to meet people and make friends with them.
I gathered all the techniques and took careful notes about what worked in mastering conversation and making friends.
Afterwards, I started to share those techniques with my closest friends. They were surprised how that stuff is hidden from everybody, and amazed by how effective it is to meet and make friends.
The best way to start using these techniques and meet and make friends is to read my book “Get The Friends You Want.” In it, you’ll get an tremendous advantage by learning how to keep conversations going, and make all the friends you want.
A great way to avoid long-term loneliness and shyness, is to learn how to master conversations and avoid awkward silences.
You can try my book for 60 days here:
I’ll talk to you soon,
– Paul Sanders
Author, Get The Friends You Want