Making conversation is not an uphill task. It's an art that one can cultivate easily
I am bad with my interpersonal skills. As a reason, I have very few friends. When I meet people, I find it difficult to have a conversation. I don't understand what to talk about. My conversations are mostly related to my work. Infact I find it difficult even to converse with my wife. When I see people talking, I often wonder how they manage to get ideas to converse about. Please help me eliminate this problem. 

There is nothing frightening about communicating. It is a very pleasant skill that everyone can cultivate. You too can be a good communicator if you follow these simple tips. 

Make a good first impression. It takes all of three seconds for someone to evaluate you when you meet for the first time. Ensure that your appearance, your body language, your demeanor, your mannerisms and your attire speak for themselves and complement you. 

If you are tense when you begin a conversation, try to relax. When your body relaxes, your mind will automatically relax. Take deep breaths. The more oxygen you get into your system, the more relaxed your muscles will be. 

Improve your general knowledge. Be updated on the current events. Read voraciously; books, newspapers, and magazines. Watch TV programs and movies and you will find several topics for conversation. 

Be a good listener. Most communications fail because of the inability to listen. Communication is a two-way process. How can you respond if you do not listen and comprehend? Repeat what you have heard and ask questions to show that you have really been listening. 

Ask different questions, where the answers will not be a simple yes or no. Begin your questions with 'why', 'what', 'where'. Find out the details. Become interested in what the person is talking about. Ask open-ended questions like 'What is your opinion on…' 'What do you think of…' 

Do not interrupt the person who is talking. Intervening shuts down communication, reduces your effectiveness as a listener as well as your ability to learn more about what the person intends to convey. 

Be comfortable and natural. Paying too much attention to your every gesture or body movement will detract from your message or even put people off. 

Be genuine and sincere. When you talk to people, look at them; make eye contact and be genuinely interested in what they have to say. Determine if they are happy or hurting. When you give them this kind of attention, you will win friends.
 
Think before you speak. Don't just shoot everything out. Organise your thoughts in a way which is simple and easy to comprehend. Use simple language; avoid clichés. 

Smile. The more you smile the more attention you show to the other person. 

Laughter is the best medicine. Nobody will ridicule you for laughing. When you are fumbling or stumbling for the right word or when you have made a mistake or said the wrong thing, try laughter; it eases any situation. 

Be positive. Your attitude will reflect in everything you do. Project a positive attitude even in the face of criticism. 

Practise in front of a mirror or with someone that you are comfortable with and trust. Ideally that should be your wife! She can be your confidante and help you to overcome your fear. 

Finally nobody else knows that you are nervous or tongue-tied. So act confident; put on your brave face and remember that you have everything that you need to communicate, so just begin practising. 

Accept every invitation that you possibly can and try your hand at chatting in a crowd; tell a joke or a witty anecdote. Practise is the only way to get perfect



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