The ability to engage others in conversation is a skill that can serve us all well. Striking the right tone between beinginteresting and being interested is the key to being a successful conversationalist. It is a delicate balance to find, you simply need to remember that people enjoy talking with people who help them to feel good about themselves, who add a bit of charm to the surroundings, and who seem to enjoy their own lives.
Listen. Listen. Listen.
Always remember that the most important element of being in a conversation is to listen. Show your interest not by talking up a storm, but by listening to the words of people around you and responding in kind. Being alert will allow you to pick up on cues, such as how to make someone feel more comfortable, in a way that dominating a conversation will not.
Offer Topics and Ask Questions.
A touch of preparation goes a long way, which is why it is wise for every lady to be at least a little familiar with the news of the day in order to share general comments. An even more important step is to ask questions. Start with general areas, such as work, hobbies and travel, and continue to explore as you find common interests or new areas that interest you!
Avoid Controversial Areas.
We all know to avoid politics, religion, and money in polite company, but a lot of other topics can be considered uncomfortable for your conversation partner. When in doubt, let your partner raise any topics that could be considered personal, such as children or spousal relationships. You do not want to assume a level of intimacy that does not exist. And, of course, no gossip!
Pay Appropriate Compliments.
It is always nice to hear positive words, and we should certainly feel welcome to share kind thoughts with someone. Obviously, it is best not to focus on physical features, but otherwise, compliment away! These warm words can set the tone for not just a conversation, but what may just be a friendship in development.
Sarah Carey is The Glamorous Housewife Etiquette Expert. You can read more about her here.